City of Clarkson Valley
Missouri

 

Clarkson Valley News
November 2004

 

MAYOR'S CORNER

 Those pretty green ornaments that decorate our trees during the summer months have become dreaded leaves.  Indeed, the air is cooler and the fireplace chimneys are beginning to come alive.  From your Alderpersons, employees and yours truly, best wishes for a safe and joyous Holiday Season.

As the year comes to a close and I look back, there are some significant happenings worthy of review.  We continue to receive excellent police service and you have indicated to us your satisfaction.  For the first time in our City's history we signed a police contract for more than one year. The contract is for five years with the City of Ballwin. The first year (’04-’05) carried a 16% increase, however, the four subsequent years carry only a 1.5% increase per year. We feel this budget stability is very important and it weighed heavily in our decision to sign this contract. A new contract for one year with Midwest Waste was also signed.  The increase for the contract was only 2%.  In this newsletter we have touched on new ordinances relating to: deer hunts, swimming pools, fireplaces, and retaining walls.  For more information about these and other City matters, including an update on the sound wall issue, holiday trash schedules, and various other topics, visit our website at (www.clarksonvalley.org).

Deer Control Ordinances

The news media has carried numerous stories concerning the Council's discussion and passage of an ordinance.  This action was in response to residents requesting action to reduce the deer population.  The Council has devoted considerable time and effort researching how to approach this problem. 

Alderperson Susan Shea serves on the West County Deer Task Force Committee working with other cities and agencies addressing this problem.  Her reports to the Council provided valuable information allowing each Council member to study possible solutions.  All members contributed their ideas (including doing nothing).  A summary of the Council's actions follows: 

    A homeowner may authorize a hunt on his or her property

    The authorized hunt must be during the archery hunting season as defined by the State of Missouri

    The authorized hunt must conform to the city ordinance allowing a deer archery hunt as well as all of the appropriate Missouri State Laws.

    The city ordinance requires liability insurance of two million dollars, by the homeowner and/or the hunter. 

    The city ordinance specifies safety measures to be followed by the hunter, i.e. minimum heights for shooting stands, where arrows can be shot, etc.

    The homeowner takes responsibility for all aspects of the hunt, including notification of all neighbors.

     The city does not authorize hunting, only the homeowner can do that.  The city does not issue a license or a permit to hunt. 

You can view the ordinance in its entirety on our website at www.clarksonvalley.org.  

Some citizens have voiced concerns about the ordinance.  Let me suggest the following for all of us.  If your neighbor notifies you they are having a hunt or if you are the person having the hunt on your property: 

     Call your neighbor to discuss the specifics, decide if a meeting to talk is appropriate.

     Review the specifics of where on the property the "tree stand" will be placed.

     Who are the hunters: names, what instructions do they have, etc.

     What days and times hunter will be hunting?

     Is permission to go on other than the "hunting property" given?  If so, how will they handle the deer removal?

     If no permission is granted, what is the procedure for removing any dead deer found?

     Discuss other issues of concern; i.e. hunter's credentials, etc.

     Review the "Suggested Actions for Property Owner Authorizing a Deer Hunt on Their Property" memo provided to all homeowners authorizing a hunt (additional copies available at city hall).   

We plan to review the results at the season's end for possible future actions.

Swimming Pools

The new ordinance alters the definition of a swimming pool.  It clarifies that a swimming pool is to be installed below the existing grade of the surrounding yard, in the ground; thus prohibiting above ground swimming pools. 

The ordinance defines a swimming pool as any man-made structure or pre-fabricated device, being portable or non-portable, designed for the storage, containment, retention, collection, or circulation of water having a depth greater than twenty-four (24) inches and which shall be designed or used for swimming and/or wading purposes. 

Fireplace Exhaust Vents and/or Chimneys

Over the years, different types of fireplaces, i.e. non-masonry exhaust systems including new versions of Franklin Stoves, have become popular.  To clarify the installation for these types of fireplaces, the new ordinance specifies the exhaust flue is to be enclosed by full masonry, cultured stone veneer, or faux masonry enclosures.   

Additionally, the size, dimensions, and proportions of the full masonry, cultured stone veneer, or faux masonry enclosure shall be consistent with generally accepted architectural standards and shall be subject to review and approval by the Architectural Review Board.

All fireplaces with a direct venting system shall be installed in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications and shall be consistent with generally accepted architectural standards and shall be subject to review and approval by the Architectural Review Board.

Retaining Walls

A retaining wall is considered a structure by city ordinance.  When constructing such a wall, a building permit with an engineer's or architect's seal is required.  The new ordinance makes one exception; it states that when constructing a wall to a height of four feet or less inside the building line, a building permit is not required.  Any wall that exceeds four feet requires a building permit (plans submitted with either an engineer's or architect's seal).   

If an existing retaining wall over four (4) feet in height is replaced, the property owner shall obtain a building permit prior to any re-construction of the retaining wall.  There are a few existing walls outside the property's building lines.  The City's Board of Adjustment approved these before they were constructed.  The new ordinance clarifies the procedure for modifying or replacing these existing walls.  The procedure requires a building permit and approval by the Board of Adjustment for any changes. 

Budget 2004/2005

 The 2004-2005 Budget may be viewed online by clicking on the “2004-2005 Budget” link on the City’s web site.  A hard copy may be obtained by calling City Hall. 

Building Permit Notes 

If you are considering additions or alterations to you home, please consider the following: 

     Building lines for a standard lot (i.e. not fronting two streets, not a pie-shaped lot, etc.) are 75' front yard, 25' side yard, 50' rear yard.

     Building Permits are required for almost all alterations, including kitchen remodeling.  Please check with City Hall before hiring a contractor.

     Either an architect or engineer, licensed in the State of Missouri, must seal plans. 

Check the City Web Site 

The agenda for each month’s Board meeting is posted on the web site the weekend before each meeting. 

   



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