The Kenai city council approved new rules for gravel and other surface material extraction at its meeting this week.
Those new rules include a requirement that property owners have a surveyor, engineer or other like professional to sign off on proposed site plans before they can be reviewed for conditional use permits. It also prohibits those permits within the 100 and 500 year floodplain.
City Manager Paul Ostrander says there is also a way to challenge the city’s floodplain maps if a project is being held up and the property owner doesn’t think their project is in that flood zone.
“Essentially what it’s saying is that if the map is wrong and a surveyor proves it’s wrong, we’ll allow the conditional use application to go forward.”
Other changes could come later, depending on what happens with the borough's material site work group. That group has been working since February on potential revisions to borough code regarding gravel pits and material extraction. After a break over the summer, that work group will resume its efforts next month.
*Correction: A previous version of this story noted there would be a moratorium on new permits. That moratorium was left out of the final version of the ordinance. We regret the error.