Commissioners Say 'Nay' to Riparian Amendments

Commissioners Say 'Nay' to Riparian Amendments (Photos by Chris Foy)
Commissioners Say 'Nay' to Riparian Amendments (Photos by Chris Foy)

After two hours of public comment at their Tuesday meeting, the Sheridan County Board of County Commissioners voted 4-1 against the controversial riparian management amendments. Commissioner Terry Cram was the lone vote in favor of the proposed regulations, which would have established a buffer zone on certain areas of private property adjacent to a stream or river.

More than 19 individuals spoke during the public comment period, most against the riparian amendments but a few in favor of the regulations. Concerns ranged from decreased property values if the item passed, to concerns that the regulations - which would have exempted agriculture - would not have a positive impact on water quality or native wildlife.

Commissioner Tom Ringley explains why he voted against the proposed regulations.

Retired biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Roger Wilson, was one of the few who spoke out in favor of the amendments. He said the agriculture exemptions should be addressed and that the public response to this proposal cannot be ignored.

Ringley says the county spent in the neighborhood of $70,000 on developing the riparian regulations.

Earlier this month, the Sheridan County Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval of the proposed amendments in a vote of 4-1 in favor of the regulations.

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