Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds signed a new law. Kim Reynolds has allowed her neighbor to open a gun shop at home without requiring a permit. This limits the power of local governments to regulate home business.
The following Wednesday was the Des Moines Register Reports state that the Des Moines Zoning Board of Adjustment would hold a public meeting to hear a application by Travis and Elizabeth Aslin, who wanted to establish a home-based business to sell guns online.
The Aslins’ plan for their home-based business—which would be located just across the street from the Iowa governor’s mansion—set off a storm of controversy from the neighbors, who argued it could lead to an increase in crime and reduction in property values.
It is possible to buy weapons and have them fired from the property, giving you a range that amounts to almost 2000. [feet]—this affect hundreds of houses, businesses, daycares, domestic violence shelters, a school, and the governor’s mansion,” reads the petition, which was signed some 170 people.
This organized public opposition often suffices to block conditional usage applications. This is not the case.
It was scheduled to be held on the day that the Zoning Board of Adjustment would hold its public hearing regarding the Aslins permits permit. However, the board abruptly cancelled it.
Erik Lundy was a city zoning officer who wrote a letter explaining how the proposed firearm-selling business by the Aslins qualified as a “no impact home-based company” according to the home-based businesses bill that Reynolds signed in June.
Travis Aslin spoke as well Axios His business was more hobby-oriented and he has only sold two guns from his home in the past five years.
Local governments are prohibited from prohibiting no-impact business owners, as long as they do not generate off-street parking or the activity is within the home and cannot be seen by neighbors. It also prohibits local governments to require home-based businesses that are not impacting the environment to get permits, licenses, and other permissions.
Lundy claimed that the state law prohibited the city’s requirement for the Aslins obtain permits. Lundy’s letter noted that Travis Aslin is already subject to federal regulation regarding firearms. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives can perform unannounced annual inspections.
Lundy wrote a letter letting the couple know that they can continue their business. The neighboring opponents also told the Des Moines Register They were going to appeal the decision of the Zoning Board and they will go all the way up to the District Court if needed.
The most common conditional use permit dispute goes in the opposite direction. The property owner must file endless appeals to persuade neighbors and officials to allow them to have what they want.
Iowa’s protections for home-based business have changed that dynamic. Now it’s local NIMBYs who have to turn their wheels and spend money. They argue that a home-based business would be a threat to their neighborhood, which should be stopped.
Iowa’s home-based business law allows local authorities to concentrate on actual effects of businesses on neighbors. This allows local governments to focus on legitimate nuisances and allows people freedom of use.
If that allows a gun dealer to set up shop right next to the governor’s residence, then so be it.