Marquette Township to consider zoning text amendments

Jason McCarthy, planner, Marquette Township

MARQUETTE — The Marquette Township Board will consider a proposed amendment to short-term rental zoning text during a regular meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.

According to a May 10 memo from Township Planner and Zoning Administrator Jason McCarthy, the planning commission began discussions and ultimately drafted zoning language in 2017 that would permit and regulate short-term rentals.

The proposed language defines a short-term rental as “a residential dwelling, not owner-occupied, which is rentend, all or in part, on a daily, weekly or monthly basis, for ninety days or less.”

Property-owners who wish to use a residence as a short-term rental must acquire a permit from the township for special use only in the township’s scenic residential, rural residential, urban residential and resource production zoning districts, the proposed language states.

In order to qualify as a short-term rental, the property would undergo a fire-code review by the Marquette Township Fire Department every two years.

A Marquette Township Business License, proof of insurance on the property denoting “additional commercial use,” and off-street parking conforming to existing zoning language would also be required, according to the proposed amendment.

The text amendment was unanimously approved by the township planning commission during its April 11 meeting and was then supported by the Marquette County Planning Commission on May 2.

“The proposed amendments would allow and regulate short-term rentals as a special use, when certain conditions are met,” a May 4 letter from the Marquette County Resource Management/Development Department Planning Division states. “The proposed amendment would be compatible with existing uses in the identified districts and appears to be consistent with the Township’s master plan, which recognizes the local need for rental units.”

The board will also continue discussion of the township’s proposed Drinking Water Revolving Fund II Water Project as a follow-up to a May 8 work session.

According to a Michigan Department of Environmental Quality fact sheet, the DWRF provides reduced interest rate loan financing to qualified water suppliers to finance construction of public water systems.

“Projects may include new wells, new water treatment plants, storage facilities, upgrades or expansions to existing facilities, transmission lines, pumping facilities, and other related waterworks system improvements,” the sheet states.

The township shares a water system with the city of Marquette and are partners in a perpetual water supply agreement which began in 1982 and was revised in 2009.