Powell City Council last week gave a first reading to an ordinance repealing a section of the city's zoning code created by a citizen-led initiative petition.

Powell City Council last week gave a first reading to an ordinance repealing a section of the city's zoning code created by a citizen-led initiative petition.

The zoning code section limits any single retail use to no more than 10,000 square feet for a single user and 65,000 square feet for multiple users, all within one-half mile on either side of Sawmill Parkway.

Several council members made clear that an error in a newspaper advertisement of the hearing was the only reason the code wasn't repealed Tuesday.

The code, section 1147.16, was adopted by council last August and sent to the city's P&Z commission to study. The commission has recommended that it be repealed, saying it would:

Discourage property owners from annexing into the city.

Hinder the expansion, renovation or rebuilding of existing nonresidential properties.

Shut out desirable single retailers that need more than 10,000 square feet.

Conflict with the city's code 1147.15 that regulates "large nonresidential establishments," which passed in 2004.

Had council not approved the citizen-led initiative in August, it would have appeared on the November ballot for voters to decide. Had voters approved it, that would have prevented city council from ever repealing it.

City council has the right to repeal any ordinance it adopts, even those resulting from a citizen-led initiative petition, city attorney Gene Hollins has said. Had the initiative petition been approved at the ballot, it could be repealed only by returning to the ballot.

Residents who developed and circulated the petition were upset about Powell's 2007 approval of plans for a Target store to be built in the Golf Village area.

City officials have said the initiative ordinance cannot stop a Target store planned at the southeast corner of Sawmill Parkway and Home Road, because the store was planned before the legislation was enacted.