Supervisors vote 2-1 to approve wedding venue north of Shellsburg

Neighbors express concern about traffic, alcohol and loud music

VINTON – There will be a new venue for weddings and other events north of Shellsburg. And there is planned be no loud music to disturb the neighbors.

This was brought up at a land use hearing was held by the Benton County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday, July 7, for Brandon and Jennica Jordan for land in Parcel E, Section 27, Benton Township.

Marc Greenlee meets with the Benton County Board of Supervisors at a meeting July 7.

They plan a wedding venue off of 32nd Ave. The venue is just south of where they live. They’d like to build a building with capacity of 250 guests. The venue will not have a kitchen or a bar. The people renting the facility will have to provide their own food and drinks. It is set up to be a year-round facility. Land Use Administrator Marc Greenlee said the land is now in production with a CSR of 68. It will need a new well and septic system. This is an area with residences, as well as a broadcasting tower, and is 3.5 miles north of Shellsburg.

There was discussion about a driveway, and placement of trees to help as a buffer for noise and lights on the property. Neighbor Dennis Manley said he was opposed. Manley had concerns about an access road. He said he never would have bought his property if he knew there would be a proposed neighboring business that would create a lot of traffic. He was also concerned about the number of weddings and receptions and the number of vehicles coming to attend these.

Manley was also concerned about the use of alcohol and loud music. He stressed, “We want to live in a peaceful, quiet, non-business rural area.” He felt the road traffic would devalue his property.

Other neighbors were also concerned, with one neighbor saying it would change the dynamic of the whole area.

Brandon Jordan stressed it was a wedding venue, and not a party venue. Weddings are calm. He added it is near a hard-surfaced road. Jordan observed, “It’s the world we live in. People are building everywhere.” It’s a building they want to build for themselves and the community.

Supervisor Chairman Richard Primmer pointed out the board recently approved a venue north of Vinton that is close to residential areas. He’s been to weddings in rural settings, and everything was under control, he said. He sees this as something that is no different than what they had already approved.

Primmer stressed these venues can bring in additional revenue to the county. He emphasized, “If we don’t do something – open our eyes – taxes are going to go up for all residential places.” He said he is pro-business and pro-development.

Supervisor Tracy Seeman asked about having music outside. He then made a motion to approve. Supervisor Gary Bierschenk said he still had questions on distance from neighbors, and was concerned neighbors who bought their property, not knowing if they knew there’d be a venue next door. He didn’t second the motion, so Primmer seconded. It was approved, 2-1, with Bierschenk opposed.

After the vote, Primmer told the Jordans, “Build a good one.”

Seeman urged the Jordans, “Keep your neighbors happy.”

Other business

A land use hearing was held for Larry Koster for land in Section 28, Leroy Township, southwest of Blairstown, to continue to have a place for the sale of firearms. The change was approved.

Holly Ollinger met with the board about seal coating 61st Street. Residents along the road may pay a special assessment if they want the seal coat, according to Engineer Myron Parizek. There was discussion on the materials, cost and timeframe.

The board took action on several culvert projects.

The board heard the security committee’s recommendation on county facilities. The board went into closed session at the end of the meeting to deal with this.

Law contracts were approved with Atkins, Newhall and Shellsburg.

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