Monmouth council considers first phase of business registration

MONMOUTH — The Monmouth City Council is considering a business registration in the city, but it would only affect new businesses at this point, City Manager Scott McClure said.

The issue was discussed at the Oct. 4 council meeting.

“The idea with that is to have somebody come in and do simple checks to make sure they’re in compliance with city rules, zoning, planning and anything else you need to do there,” McClure said. “It’s not ongoing or annual.”

The point would be to help new business owners get everything in order ahead of time.

“There’s all sorts of silly stuff people don’t think about,” he said.

For example, sometimes someone will arrange a lease with a building owner and start a business without ever consulting the city. Sometimes, this leads the city to have to tell someone they are not in compliance with codes, McClure said.

The council talked about doing a more ongoing, annual business registration at a later date, he said.

“There is a benefit to registration like (that),” McClure said. “You have basic data. Public safety likes contact information, but the flip side is you have to administer it, dedicate staff time to doing the letters and follow-up phone calls.”

Also at the meeting, the council heard about plans on Gwinn Street.

The residential housing development would finish the street.

“You’d be able to get from Gwinn Street to Highway 99 when it’s done,” McClure said.

Housing is in demand in Monmouth, McClure noted.

“What we’re seeing right now is infill development, where you get a little creative — a lot here, a lot there,” he said. “Where we’re sitting, there aren’t a lot of subdivisions available here.”

The council also heard a request from the Monmouth Engaged bicycle and pedestrian committee to install bicycle-only camping at Gentle Woods Park, McClure said.

With the bike path on Highway 99W, it would be easy for cyclist to spend the night at the park, he said.

“We’re going through, how does this work?” McClure said. “How do you manage it, what’s the best location in the park. In some cases, you could just drop your tent on the ground and call it good, but what would be the impact of current users, and also the neighborhood impact?”

The space at Gentle Woods Park is used often, McClure said.

“Sometimes these things are easier if you have a surplus piece of land, but most of the property is used,” he said. “There’s heavy rentals down there. You have to figure out how to make everything dovetail in there.”

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