The Billings City Council Monday night approved several zone changes on first reading, but tabled a decision on a new annexation policy.
The council decided to wait 30 days on the annexation policy to allow council members a chance to better review the policy. Councilman Milton Ohnstad, of Ward 4, said the extra time will provide an opportunity "to work out any kinks" in the policy.
"Most of our annexation policy is dictated by the State of Montana," Ohnstad said. "There are definite guidelines to go by. But our annexation policy has become much more liberal. We would like a crack at these subdivisions before they are annexed."
Ohnstad said the biggest change in the new policy is widening the city's "zone of influence," which will help determine where the city looks at annexing. Primary locations include along the Yellowstone River, Yellowstone Country Club and northwest Billings, he said.
Among the zone changes approved by the City Council on first reading following a public hearing Monday night were:
Change from residential 9600 to planned development with underlying zoning of single family and duplex on a tract located on the north side of Monad Road between 29th and 30th streets west.
Change from controlled industrial to community commercial on a lot in Gabel Subdivision on the south side of Gabel Road north and east of Hesper Road.
Change from residential 7000 to residential professional in the Happy Hollow Subdivision at 349 Wicks Lane.
A special review was also approved by the council to allow the location of a veterinary clinic with boarding in a community commercial zone in the Lake Hills Subdivision. The clinic would be located at 1626 and 1638 Gleneagles Blvd.