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  • Lighting ordinance gets approval from county commissioners

By Myrna Trauntvein
Times-News Correspondent

Juab County now has a lighting ordinance as part of the county’s land use code.

Glenn Greenhalgh, county planning director, said that the planning commission had spent quite a bit of time seriously considering a lighting ordinance after the county commission had requested that they make it a topic for study.

“The purpose of this chapter is to encourage lighting that provides safety, utility and security while preventing glare on public ways, protecting the enjoyment of private property rights, conserving energy resources and reducing atmospheric light pollution,” Greenhalgh read from the ordinance proposal.

A few more legal steps were needed in order to make adoption legal. The ordinance should be passed with a resolution and an ordinance number, said Ryan Peters, Juab County Attorney.

The resolution could be prepared before the day was over, said Greenhalgh.

That was done and then the resolution was adopted and the ordinance was passed and has become official.

The county planning commission had held a public hearing, and the planning commission was suggesting that the commission adopt the ordinance as it was presented.

“The ordinance is not retroactive,” he said. “Those businesses already in place will not be affected.”

One situation in the county where lighting was already in place was being discussed by the business owner and the county, said Rick Carlton, commissioner. The business owner of that particular facility was willing to work with the county to mitigate the problem.

As for electric producing facilities, he said, the federal government had certain rules that had to be followed.

Largely affected will be those businesses whose light is projected up.

“The concern is in how the light affects other properties,” said Greenhalgh.

If a proposed development, except those limited to one or two family dwellings, involves the installation or alteration of outdoor lighting fixtures or other high intensity sources, a lighting plan will need to be submitted.

A site plan will need to be made that will show the location, height, manufacture, model, lamp type, lumen output and wattage of each outdoor or other high intensity lighting fixtures in relationship to buildings, streets, neighboring properties and parking areas.

There must also be an iso-lux plan that will show the levels of illumination that would result at ground level; a certification that the lighting fixtures to be installed are fully shielded, cut off type fixtures that will not allow light dispersion or direct glare to shine above a 90-degree horizontal plan from the base; a certification that the exterior lighting will comply with the maintained horizontal illumination recommendations of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America.

Also part of the ordinance, said Greenhalgh, the plan discusses lighting of outdoor sports or performance facilities, security lighting, parking lot lighting, lighting of exterior sales and display areas.

“There are some exemptions,” said Greenhalgh. “Temporary lighting, including but not limited to circuses, fairs, carnivals and civic uses, for a period not to exceed 10 days unless otherwise approved by the planning commission.”

That would also include activities at the fairgrounds such as the Ute Stampede, he said.

Holiday lighting during the months of November, December and January are exempted as long as they do not create dangerous glare on adjacent streets or properties.

“Lighting associated with agricultural operations, excluding agricultural industry or business, is also exempted,” said Greenhalgh.

“I have read the ordinance and would like to see a couple of additions,” said Carlton.

There were a few things that needed to be considered, he said. One dealt with the way greenhouses get rid of excess heat. Plants cannot get too much light, but they can get too much of the heat energy that comes with the light. The term “dump heat” refers to a way to cool the intensity.

If a shield is used to black out the intensity of light being emitted, there has to be a time when the greenhouse is allowed to emit that heat.

Byron Woodland, commissioner, asked about the amount of lumens allowed.

“There are two tables that have the lumens listed,” said Greenhalgh.

“What is the penalty for breaking the terms of the ordinance?” asked Woodland.

It would be considered a Class B violation with a fine. However, said Greenhalgh, land use code means that the fine is levied each day of violation.

Carlton said he would like to see sensors added to the buildings where light was used so that those businesses could provide real-time data.

He would also like to add a self-reporting option, he said.

“I would like to pass the ordinance today,” said Carlton. “It would still be subject to amendments.”

“You, as a commission, have the legal authority to accept, reject, or accept with changes the recommendation of the planning commission,” said Greenhalgh.

“We are voting to accept the recommendation of the planning commission,” said Clint Painter, commission chairman.