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Committee formed for North Elba-Lake Placid code rewrite

LAKE PLACID — A new steering committee has been formed to offer lawmakers recommendations on how to rewrite the North Elba-Lake Placid joint land use code.

The new committee was put together by the Lake Placid-North Elba Community Development Commission, a volunteer organization that has facilitated updates to the land use code in the past.

The members of the committee, recently approved by both the North Elba Town Board and Lake Placid Village Board of Trustees, include the following:

¯ Bill Billerman, who worked on the steering committee for the last code rewrite in 2011

¯ Liz Clarke, a planning consultant

¯ Dean Dietrich, chairman of the LPNECDC

¯ Village Trustee Art Devlin

¯ State Adirondack Park Agency Special Assistant for Economic Affairs Dan Kelleher

¯ North Elba-Lake Placid Joint Review Board member Jackie Kelly

¯ Darci LaFave from the town Code Enforcement Office

¯ Michael Orticelle from the town Code Enforcement Office

¯ North Elba Town Council member Emily Politi

¯ Joint Review Board lawyer Tim Smith.

“We tried to pick people who were familiar with the existing land use code,” said Dietrich, who is also serving as chairman of the steering committee.

The joint land use code became a point of contention during the years-long debate over this area’s short-term vacation rental regulations, which went into effect a few months ago. Before the regulations were adopted, the land use code didn’t include a definition of what’s considered a “short-term vacation rental,” and people had different interpretations of whether or not the rentals should be allowed in residential neighborhoods under the code.

At a meeting in March, some North Elba town councilors said that throughout the process of writing recently adopted short-term vacation rental regulations, it became clear to them that the code should be rewritten.

“It’s become evident that there’s really some missing, lacking definitions in our land use code,” town Councilor Politi said at the time. “It’s time to update it and make it more enforceable.”

The joint land use code was last rewritten in 2011, according to Dietrich. The process of updating the code took roughly three years.

Dietrich said in April that the process of rewriting the code will require a lot of public input because the land use code is meant to reflect and support the community’s vision. Based on public input, new provisions could be included to facilitate things like more affordable housing or the control of short-term vacation rentals.

The committee has already met several times, he said. There are no upcoming dates scheduled for livestreamed or otherwise public meetings.

The committee hopes to hire a consultant to help the process along by the end of the summer, according to Dietrich.

A full timeline detailing the committee’s upcoming work is available at futurelakeplacid.com.

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