Whoops! Public Given Wrong Ordinance to Review Before Commission Meeting

February 6, 2020

The confusion and distrust already inherent in the passage of Dade's first zoning ordinance were exacerbated Wednesday as the county, in an effort to make the process more transparent by posting the current version online, instead muddied the waters further by accidentally posting the wrong version.


The county government had represented that the only difference in the  version presented to the public prior to the hearing on it Jan. 30 and the one that will be taken back up by the county commission at tonight's February meeting was the removal of chicken house setbacks that had proven unpopular with Dade's agricultural residents. (The unannounced insertion of those setbacks, which had not been included in the version rendered by the committee appointed to produce the ordinance, had been in no small part responsible for the aforementioned confusion and distrust.) 


But other small differences in the versions marked 1/2/2020, the print version marked 2/2/2020, and the ordinance as posted online quickly emerged, and late Wednesday night Dade County Deputy Clerk Carey Anderson issued an apology on the county's Facebook, admitted an earlier version of the ordinance had been posted, and announced that the corrected version was now available on the county website. Here's a link to that:




Whether or not it will add to the confusion and distrust, here's a final observation: The new corrected version now online does in fact contain more changes from the 1/2/2020 version  than the removal of the chicken house setbacks: Notably, it changes the size limit for exemption from the ordinance from one acre to three. 


C & S Plating, the chromium plating business on Highway 11 that has been accused of responsibility for Dade's concentration of the deadly carcinogen chromium-6--exponentially higher than that of neighboring counties--operates on 2.2 acres. A speaker at the first public hearing on Dade's landmark land use ordinance pointed out that the Pilgrim's Pride chicken processing plant in Chattanooga--whose rumored move to Dade spurred drafting of the ordinance in the first place--takes up about the same amount of space.


The county commission's meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the Administrative Building.

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