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A. In addition to applicable criminal penalties under Arizona law, violations of this Saguaro Cactus Preservation Ordinance shall be subject to the provisions of the Fountain Hills Town Code, Section 1-8-2, regarding criminal penalties.

B. A Saguaro Cactus Permit shall not be issued after a violation resulting in destruction, removal or relocation of a saguaro cactus has been discovered until such time as (1) a program for restoration of the site shall be approved by the Planning and Zoning Administrator or designee based on the expected health, height and density of saguaro cacti within the vegetation community in which the violation occurred and (2) the property has been fully restored with healthy saguaro cactus.

C. The Town Manager or designee may waive the restoration requirement in Subsection B above when it will further the purpose of this Chapter and be in the best interest of the community, and when it is demonstrated that development of the property is imminent as determined by the following criteria:

a. A development proposal is submitted for approval by the Planning and Zoning Commission within ten days of the notice of violation; and

b. The proposed development is consistent with the Town of Fountain Hills General Plan; and

c. The zoning of the property is consistent with the proposed development; and

d. Infrastructure improvements are in place that can support the proposed development.

i. If a waiver is granted, $2,500 per saguaro cactus shall be paid to the Town for the purpose of replacing and maintaining saguaro cacti.

ii. Determination of the total sum of money to be paid to the Town pursuant to this Section shall be determined by the Planning and Zoning Administrator and shall be based upon the height, density and condition of saguaro cacti that existed on the property prior to violation, or upon inspection of the remains of saguaro cacti or other physical evidence as may be available.

iii. The sum of money required by this Subsection shall be used to replace removed or damaged saguaro cacti whose retention is required by a Saguaro Cactus program and to maintain such replacement cacti for a period of three years. Additionally, up to ten percent of the total amount payable may be retained by the Town to cover its costs for replacing the saguaro cactus and enforcing this Chapter.

iv. Prior to issuance of any permits for construction on or development of the property, the property owner shall enter into an agreement with a landscape installation and maintenance service and the Town to ensure replacement and three years maintenance of the replacement saguaro cacti. (21-15, Amended, 09/21/2021)