In all actuality the EDC having to even ask for a variance I think brings up possibly a bigger issue.
If you look at the map, you will see 3 areas (gray areas) that were annexed into the City Limits in 2001. Found in Vol. 777 Page 379 of the official Deed Records; (amazing what you can get online now-a-day).
It appears, in my estimation of location, that there should be all City Services on the opposite side of Hwy 11 from the proposed site. So shouldn't the EDC or City be able to bore under the highway to tap into the sewer line?
According to what I found online there is a legal time limit within which a city is required to provide services to annexed areas.
"Most city services are required to be provided immediately upon annexation. However, State law also requires that a city provide "full municipal services" within 2 ½ years after the effective annexation date. If services cannot reasonably be provided within 2 ½ years, the maximum time allowed by State statute is 4½ years."
Annexed into the City in 2001, means by 2006 at the latest, all services should have been made available to all property owners in the annexed areas.
Simple question: Has the City provided all city service to all the property owners of the annexed areas? They have been paying full city taxes and State law says you must and the deed records showed that you agreed to provide the services.
I think if there are property owners who were annexed in the City and now 12+ years later they still do not have full city services they deserve a refund of city property taxes paid plus interest.