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No Leap-Froging

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After all the talk about limiting sprawl, Ada County is moving toward making it the law of the land.

The Ada County Planning and Zoning Commission will take up a proposed amendment to the county's comprehensive plan at their meeting on March 13. The proposal would make it far more difficult for developers to build leap-frog subdivisions in rural areas by requiring sewer and other infrastructure to be in place before any project will be approved.

The motion comes straight out of the much-touted Blueprint for Good Growth, the guidelines being promoted to manage growth across the valley.

According to Rich Wright, county spokesman, the amendment would force development into areas suitable for it. In the past, the county allowed for the creation of some subdivisions in rural areas as long as the developments included their own sewer system.

Problems inevitably followed as the city grew around these developments and homeowners were asked to pay massive fees to hook up to city services, or the city was faced with an even bigger bill to reroute the sewer line around the subdivision.

The amendment wasn't part of the recently adopted comprehensive plan because it wasn't ready in time, Wright said.

Anyone who wants to chime in on the issue can attend the Planning and Zoning Commission meeting at 6 p.m. on March 13 in the commission hearing room in the Ada County Courthouse, 200 W. Front St. in Boise.