Hillbillies casino zone change pushed back to July
June 13, 2007
MINDEN – Approval of a zoning change that would allow construction of Jethro Bodine’s Beverly Hillbillies Mansion & Casino was continued by the Douglas County Planning Commission on Tuesday.
Following hours of protracted debate, planning commissioners split 3-3, with commissioners Mike Olson, Matt McKinney and Bob Conner voting yes.
Commissioners Jim Madsen, Rick Ross and Margaret Pross vetoed the zoning approval.
Citing a previous engagement, Commissioner Mike Howell excused himself from the proceedings at 5:30 p.m.
The issue will be continued to the July planning commission meeting.
The project before the commission was recommended by staff for approval.
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Actor and businessman Max Baer Jr. is seeking approval for his casino on property between Topsy Lane and North Sunridge Drive along the east side of Highway 395.
Baer’s 295,000-square-foot property would include a casino, hotel and theater. According to documents included with the request, the casino would include 800 slot machines and 16 table games, a buffet, steak house, coffee shop and 365-seat showroom.
The project will require a zone change from general to tourism commercial and a variety of variances to go forward.
Among the variances are an increase of the building height to 143 feet to support a 12-story tower hotel and casino, increase of the allowed sign height from 30 to 200 feet, increase maximum sign square footage from 115 square feet to 2,600 square feet for two animated reader boards and a decrease in required parking stalls from 2,707 to 1,540.
Opposition to Baer’s project came from another north county project before planning commissioners on Tuesday that was approved unanimously.
Big George Ventures was given the OK for Georgetown Village – 254 patio homes, 27 duplexes, 56 townhouses, 46 recreational vehicle spaces and 18 common areas with 55 acres of open space and trails. The project is 101 acres owned by Big George president Raymond Sidney, a former Google software engineer.
Big George opposes Baer’s project and has established a Web site to counter one set up by Max Baer in support of the Beverly Hillbillies casino.
The Big George Web site says “Baer has interpreted vague county code to his benefit and has proposed building his casino less than 25 yards away from our neighbor-friendly residential development. County code makes it clear that a casino may not be located within 500 feet of a residential district.”