FARR WEST -- The third try was a charm for resident Jimmy Ashment, who has been trying since early May to get the city council to approve a variance so he can build a free-standing garage next to his home.
The home has a three-car garage, but Ashment wanted one more garage because his daughter now has a car.
In May, Ashment requested the variance from the city council, but the request was tabled and officials asked Ashment to come back with signatures from his neighbors stating they were comfortable with his plans.
In June, Ashment was back before the council with the signatures. All of Ashment's neighbors expressed they were fine with the plan for the garage. The variance request was again tabled and at that time Ashment expressed frustration with the council. He said he had done as the council had asked and came back with the signatures.
In a special council meeting on July 25, Ashment was finally granted permission by the city council to start construction on the garage.
Planning Commissioner John Stewart said he had been doing research of the city ordinance and said Ashment's request was in compliance with the city ordinance all along.
"I have looked at the ordinance and scrutinized it," said Stewart, "In reality Jimmy should be able to build."
Resident Ken Phippen said other residents build chicken coops and barns and he didn't know why the council had denied Ashment the building permit in the first place.
Councilman Tom Burkland said the plans would allow a fire truck to get in down one side of the building if needed.
"It needs to be similar to the front of the house," said Mayor Lee Dickemore.
"So you don't have a tin shed," said Councilwoman Ava Painter.
Stewart agreed the front of the garage should have a nice look to it, and said the city ordinance also needs to be cleaned up.
"Let's issue the permit, then we can work on cleaning up the ordinance," said Stewart.
He said he would be reviewing other cities' ordinances pertaining to these types of issues before the planning commission starts working on the ordinance.
Ashment said he was glad he could finally get the garage started.