LAYTON -- Organizers of a petition drive to put a pair of West Layton land initiatives on the ballot this fall, went above and beyond required numbers in their bid.
Jay Ripley, an official with Citizens for Responsible Growth in West Layton, said organizers exceeded the 6,500-signature threshold on the petitions filed with the county clerk's office on Monday.
The petitions challenge the West Layton planned policy change for 107 acres of farmland in West Layton, which runs along Hill Field Road between 2200 West and 2700 West, and the adoption of an urban development code needed to create the urban community under the new policy.
County election officials are now sorting through the signatures to verify registered Layton voters, according to Pat Beckstead, Davis County election clerk.
The county has 30 days to complete the review. Beckstead said the results will be turned over to the Layton city recorder to certify whether there are enough eligible signatures for the issues to go forward.
Beckstead said each petition must have 4,676 valid signatures to be valid. Some signatures may be thrown out because they can't be read and other signatures may prove to be invalid. She said it's good practice to collect more signatures than the needed number to ensure getting enough valid signatures. On both issues, Ripley said the group exceeded the necessary number of signatures by more than 20 percent.
If the petitions are valid, Mayor Steve Curtis has already indicated he would move to put the issue of a special election on the city council agenda. The council could call for a special election to be held with the Nov. 6 general election.
In early April, after years of discussion and planning, the city council voted to approve three measures relating to what has been dubbed a unique development on property owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on Hill Field Road. There was vocal opposition to the plan at a hearing before the measures were approved.
One of those measures approved a lengthy zoning ordinance that creates a new set of form-based codes for the proposal. Planners have suggested the only concept close to the proposal in Utah is Daybreak in Salt Lake County.
City leaders suggest the plan has come as the result of looking to the future and taking advantage of the chance for a unique development.
The formed-based codes allow city leaders to be much more specific with what any development proposal will look like, according to Bill Wright, community and economic development director.
Wright describes the code as scripted guidelines on what type of buildings would be allowed, specific streetscape guidelines and a blending of different mixed uses. He and other city leaders admit the project will require a unique developer.