With signed letters in hand from residents who look unfavorably upon a potential crew camp development near Killdeer, the Dunn County Commission on Wednesday approved in a 4-1 vote a rezoning request to change 120 acres of rural preservation land to rural development.
Commissioner Tim Steffan cast the lone dissenting vote.
Roughly two dozen residents and concerned parties attended the commission's meeting at the Dunn County Courthouse to voice opinion on the request.
The 120 acres of land is located north of Killdeer along Highway 22.
"The code does not limit the ability of the members of the Planning and Zoning Board, or this board, from making the political decision of whether to change zoning on a piece of land or not," Dunn County Attorney Ari Johnson said. "It is up to the Planning and Zoning Board, and in particular this board, to make what is a political -- not a legal -- but a political decision."
The proposed development could include a crew camp, gas station and dance hall.
"Most everybody that's against it basically has got a 'not in my backyard' attitude about it," landowner Scott Bice said about the development.
Landowner Terrald Bang supports the development because Killdeer is growing and has expended its developable land.
Resident Elaine Fettig was concerned about her safety with a crew camp coming in.
"I'm a single female," she said. "I do fear results of man camps, crew camps, any housing for males across the road from me, because of issues after one or two o'clock at the bars."
While designs were brought in to help with the rezoning decision, they were preliminary and submitted to give the commission and Planning and Zoning Commission an idea of what would be on the site, Johnson said.
Each entity in the plan would also have to go through the Planning and Zoning Commission and the County Commission to be approved.
Many in attendance Wednesday brought a signed letter against the development, which was presented to the commission.
The passing motion approved the land rezoning, not any of the developments.
In other news
The commission also approved the resignation of 31-year auditor Reinhard Hauck, who plans to go into retirement Sept. 15.
"Well, Reinhard, I got to come in with you, and I got to see you come out," Commission Chairman Glenn Eckelberg said. "You did an outstanding job."
Hauck recommended administrative assistant Tracey Dolezal be instated to complete his term, which ends April 2014.
Dolezal has worked for Dunn County since 1997.
The commission approved both measures.