Selma Eliminates More Red Tape For Business Landscaping Requirements

Town of Selma Planning and Economic Development Director Julie Maybee says eliminating unnecessary landscaping codes will help commerce and redevelopment of existing business parcels. Photo

The Town of Selma is cutting through the red tape making their city more business friendly.  This month, the town council took swift action eliminating a burdensome landscaping code that Town Planning and Economic Development Director Julie Maybee said would allow more flexibility in developing business and commercial properties.

The Town eliminated a requirement of a minimum of a 5 foot landscape strip between the wall of a business and the parking lot.  With the change, which took effect immediately, no grassy or landscaped strip is required.

Maybee said by eliminating the unnecessary code it would help with commerce and the redevelopment of existing business parcels.  No one spoke in opposition of the change.

Maybee said the town is continuing to review their landscaping requirements to help attract new businesses to Selma.

In May, the Town of Selma cut through the lengthy process it took for farmers to set up roadside produce stands to sell fresh fruits and vegetables to the public.  The change allows growers to buy a $50 permit and fill out a short form at the town hall, which takes less than one hour. They can open the same day.  Earlier this year in Smithfield it took a local grower 69 days to be permitted to operate one stand next to US 301.

Smithfield is currently working at updating their Unified Development Ordinance (UDO) that is very restrictive.  A former Smithfield elected official said the UDO is hampering new growth.  The UDO review is expected to take 12 to 18 months to complete.

Selma is hoping to take advantage of Smithfield’s strict requirements. Selma Town Councilman Tommy Holmes says the council welcomes all businesses – large and small – and hopes they can flourish in his city.