Minot’s Community Development Director
MINOT – Giving a town a nice flow is a difficult job, and part of that job is keeping houses and businesses somewhat separated.
Brian Billingsley has been the community development director in Minot for four years. He previously lived in Caldwell, Idaho as the planning and zoning director there.
Billingsley said Caldwell is slightly bigger than Minot, but he feels as though Idaho and North Dakota are not much different when it comes to zoning.
“I grew up in Illinois,” said Billingsley. “Not in Chicago. To be honest the zoning here is very similar to the zoning in Idaho and Illinois.”
Billingsley went to Illinois State University to go into the planning and zoning field.
“The zoning in Minot is intended to make sure a business is not next to a home that could disrupt the enjoyment of the people living there,” said Billingsley. “My job is to make sure development happens here in an orderly manner.”
There are several zoning rules and building codes that Billingsley must enforce. The codes are approved by the City Council and enforced to those within city limits and two miles beyond.
“We work with the county on some issues as well,” said Billingsley. “I love the job. It’s never a boring job. There’s always something new that pops up almost every day.”
Not only does the job require enforcement of the zoning codes, but oftentimes those codes must be updated to keep up with new trends and industries.
“Think of all the businesses that have been created over the past 30 years,” said Billingsley. “We didn’t have cell towers, then all of a sudden they’re putting these towers up. Well, you need rules for that.”
Billlingsley said most people are cooperative with the rules. The job also requires certain rules within a person’s property, like whether or not they can build a certain shed or put a sign on their property.
“Everything from the Big M to someone’s fence in their backyard,” said Billingsley.
On the side, Billingsley enjoys collecting vintage baseball cards.
“I love traveling, whether it’s going on road trips, flying, or cross country,” said Billingsley. “I really enjoy my time in Minot. I like it because it’s not too big of a city, but it offers about everything a person needs.”