- Does the Land Use Code require building permits?
No. Generally, building permits still are not required in the unincorporated areas of Delta County. However, development must comply with standards in the Delta County Land Use Code (e.g. setbacks), and lands within the Highway 92 Overlay require a building permit. Also, Electrical and Plumbing permits are required through the State Division of Professions and Organizations (DPO), Well permits are required through the State Division of Water Resources (DWR), and Septic permits are required from the County Health Department.
Delta County adopted a Land Use Code, but has not adopted Building Codes. These are separate regulations where Land Use Codes provide direction of what can occur where, and Building Codes provide minimum specifications how a structure must be built.
- Does the Land Use Code prohibit subdivision?
No. Zoning designations establish the minimum parcel size and lot dimensions (Chapter 3.A, Table 3.a LUC). Lot sizes range from smaller lots (7,500 sf) in the Urban Growth Areas (UGA) to larger lots (35+ Acres) in the A-35 zone. Existing parcels smaller than the minimum parcel size are lawful and not restricted.
A property owner can request to divide off a portion of their parcel that does not meet the minimum lot size. However, the Board of Adjustments (BOA) must grant a variance from the minimum standards (lot size, lot width, frontage, etc.) before such subdivision can be approved.
Findings to approve a variance include: a) extraordinary and exceptional situation or condition (e.g. topographical constraint); b) difficulty or hardship; c) consistent with purpose of the Land Use Code. In addition, a variance to reduce lot size also requires findings that the parcel; a) conforms to all other requirements of the Code; b) meets the minimum lot dimensions for the zoning designation; c) does not interfere with wildlife habitat; and d) are not part of a prior subdivision and will be restricted from further subdivision.
For subdivisions approved/submitted prior to the 2021 Land Use Code
- Expiration. A Final Plat is required to be completed within one (1) year from Sketch Plan or Preliminary Plat approval. The plat automatically expires if not completed within one year, or an extension was granted by the Board of County Commissioners prior to expiring.
- Vacation. A Plat approved to be completed in phases is automatically vacated if the project is not completed within three (3) years from completion of the Final Plat for Phase 1, or an extension was granted by the Board of County Commissioners prior to this term expiring.
Subdivisions processed under the regulations in place prior to the 2021 Land Use Code must be completed January 5, 2022 pursuant to Resolution 2021-R-001.
EXAMPLE: A property has 20 acres and is zoned A-35. The owner wants to divide off a 2-acre portion for their family. Said owner may apply for a variance to create one new lot that does not meet the minimum lot size. With a variance for last size, all property involved in the division would be prohibited from any further subdivision.
- Can I continue a pre-existing use that is not allowed in my zoning designation?
Yes, if it is a lawful use/structure. Uses/Structures established in conformance with the rules in place at the time, but that are not consistent with the Land Use Code are considered lawful (aka legal nonconforming). A legal nonconforming use/structure may be continued and maintained in reasonable repair, but shall not be altered or expanded.
No, if it is an unlawful use/structure. Uses/Structures that were not consistent with the rules in place and are not consistent with the Land Use Code are considered unlawful (nonconforming). The Code does not allow for the perpetuation of unlawful development.