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Published: Saturday, 2/23/2013

Judge decides against Waterville group’s bid

Waterville residents seeking a vote on whether a planned condominium complex may be developed as apartments lost their bid for a referendum on the May ballot in Lucas County Common Pleas Court.

Judge James Bates Friday ruled that Waterville City Council’s Oct. 8 decision to amend a development plan for Kensington Garden on Waterville-Monclova Road was administrative, not legislative, and therefore not subject to referendum.

“It did not enact any law, ordinance, or regulation. This happened in 2005 when the property was rezoned R-3, as well as when the residential overlay district was created,” Judge Bates wrote in his decision. “In granting the zoning permit, City Council was merely administering the zoning laws already governing the property.”

A group calling itself the Ad Hoc Committee of Waterville Citizens for Initiative and Referendum Petitions had sought a court order to stop Mercurio Developers from building the apartments and let the voters decide whether the original development plan ought to be altered.

They contended rental units, rather than owner-occupied condominiums, would hurt their property values.

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