Ruston Council Overrides P&Z on Church

After 45 minutes of an active public comment period from supporters and opponents of a zoning change requested by Faith Church Ruston, the City Council rejected the unanimous recommendation of the City’s Planning & Zoning board to grant the change.

Ward 5’s Bruce Seigmund moved to adopt the recommendation, but there was no second.

This was the second time this year that a P&Z recommendation was overruled.

Pastor Stan Pody said that the church needed room to grow, as its membership has continued to expand.

Said Pody, “I believe the sight and sound issues, if they were taken care of, this would be a win-win to everybody.”

He said that an addition to the existing building would enable the seating capacity to be doubled.

At the March 15 P&Z meeting the opponents cited loud music, unsightly storage buildings, and future commercial encroachment into the neighborhood.

Several people from the nearby Trenton Place subdivision spoke.

Allen Tuten said that he was concerned that the property wouldn’t be kept up and degrade the neighborhood.

Michelle McGee noted that rezoning could change property values in Trenton Place.

Said McGee, “If that back behind me becomes commercial property, that changes the value of my home.”

Several Church members gave testimony about how Faith Church had turned their lives around.

A + Cuts Lawn and Landscaping owner Grayson Allen said that he learned Biblical business principles at Faith.

“I didn’t learn the principles that I know about business going to Ruston High, going to Tech – I learned them from teaching from The Word – how to do Biblical business. I got taught that at Faith Church Ruston,” he said.

Colton Hall said Faith Church his life was changed for the better.

Said Hall, “I was lost, I was bound by addiction. I was not leading a very good life. I took a leap of faith and I moved down here, and shortly after I opened up my own insurance agency. It’s absolutely change my life, it’s changed my wife’s life, and now we have a one year old son.”

Earlier in the meeting, the council approved a resolution to hire a feasibility consultant for study of a city-owned internet service provider.

The vote followed public comments from over a half-dozen residents who were not satisfied with the local cable provider’s internet service.

Mayor Ronny Walker cautioned that if the plan were to move ahead, it could be as long as two years before the service would be up and running.

3 Responses to “Ruston Council Overrides P&Z on Church”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    Class warfare at its best.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Wouldn’t want them in my backyard either.

  3. Anonymous Says:

    This is evidence that churches think they can get away with anything. Good job Tuten (and others) who stood up and said “no”.

    Why don’t they do what every other church does and MOVE to a better location?

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