March 4, 2014
The regular meeting of the Pooler City Council was held on March 4, 2014. Mayor Mike Lamb called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Present were Councilman Bruce Allen, Councilwoman Rebecca Benton, Councilwoman Shannon Black, Councilman David Burke, Councilman Mike Royal and Councilman Stevie Wall. City Manager Robbie Byrd, Finance Officer/Assistant City Manager Michelle McNeely and City Attorney Steve Scheer were also present.
The invocation was given by Councilman Allen and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Councilman Burke.
The minutes of the previous meeting were approved as printed upon a motion by Councilwoman Benton, seconded by Councilman Royal, with no opposition.
Report from the Standing Committees:
Councilman Wall presented bills in excess of $1500.00 and made a motion to pay, subject to funds. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.
Councilman Royal reported that the fire department responded to 214 calls in February, totaling 458 for the year and that the police department responded to 1006 calls, totaling 5141 for the year.
Councilwoman Benton reported that the street and drainage departments performed routine maintenance.
Councilman Wall reported that the water and sewer departments performed routine maintenance and that all parameters are being met at the wastewater treatment plant.
Councilwoman Black reported that three (3) youth all-star basketball teams will be playing in the GRPA tournaments this month.
Councilman Allen reported that 12 new single family residential and seven (7) commercial permits were issued since the last meeting, totaling 26 single family and 48 commercial permits for the year, with 983 inspections performed.
Councilman Allen made a motion to add Item #7 to the agenda. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.
Mayor Lamb presented a five (5) year service pin to Police Corporal Victor Tyson, thanking him for his continued service.
David Simons, candidate for Savannah Chatham County Board of Education President, addressed Council in regards to his candidacy.
Jolene Byrne, candidate for Savannah Chatham County Board of Education President, addressed Council in regards to her candidacy.
Karen Robertson, Executive Director of the Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau, addressed Council in regards to the Chamber’s activities.
Under OLD BUSINESS the following was discussed:
1. Conditional use to add a waste transfer station at 125-B Pine Meadow Drive
Mr. Byrd stated that the petitioner has asked that this item be withdrawn. Councilwoman Benton made a motion to withdraw the item. Motion was seconded by Councilman Burke and passed without opposition.
2. Site plan for Outlet Mall of Georgia
Councilwoman Benton stepped down from her seat to recuse herself. Mr. Byrd presented the site plan for the Outlet Mall of Georgia, to include approximately 507,000 sq. ft. of outlet mall, hotel site, retail and 21 outparcels, stating that Planning & Zoning has recommended approval of the site plan, but their recommendation does not include changing the name of the road. Councilman Burke made a motion to approve the site plan. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal. Discussion followed wherein Attorney Jim Gerard, representing WVT Enterprises and Empire Oil, stated his client’s objection to the sign variance that was granted previously in the right-of-way. Mr. Gerard noted that the variance granted was not legal and is in violation of the City’s current sign ordinance. Further, that the variance was also in violation of State and Federal laws. Mr. Scheer stated that the approval of the site plan by the City does not waive any provision of the law, whether local, State or Federal, related to the variance. Mayor Lamb called for the vote on the motion; motion passed without opposition. Councilwoman Benton returned to her seat.
Under NEW BUSINESS the following was discussed:
1. Minor subdivision plat of 25.957 acre tract, Parcel 4 of the CC Jones Tract
William Grainger has submitted a request to subdivide a 25.957 acre tract known as Parcel 4 of the CC Jones Tract, into two (2) lots. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Royal, to approve the minor subdivision. Motion passed without opposition.
2. Minor subdivision plat of Lot A, Clyde E. Daniels Tract
Mr. Byrd presented a minor subdivision plat of Lot A of the Clyde E. Daniels Tract to create Lots 4 & 5 so that each existing building will have a separate lot. Councilman Allen made a motion to approve the plat. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.
3. Proposal from HD Supply Waterworks for project management services related to enhancing the City’s water metering system
Mr. Byrd presented a proposal from HD Supply Waterworks for project management services related to enhancing the City’s water metering system. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve the proposal in the amount of $20,000.00 and $1.50 per meter. Motion was seconded by Councilman Allen and passed without opposition.
4. Rename Benton Boulevard from intersection of Pooler Parkway south approximately 1000 feet
Councilwoman Benton stepped down from her seat. Terry Coleman, on behalf of Ben Carter Enterprises and Tanger Outlets, presented a request to rename the portion of Benton Boulevard from the intersection of Pooler Parkway south approximately 1000 feet to the proposed round-about at the end of the existing Park Avenue. Mr. Coleman stated that this outlet mall project has been ongoing for two (2) years and talk about renaming the road has been discussed. Attorney Noble Boykin, representing Rebecca Benton, adjacent property owner, stated his client’s objection to the renaming of the road, adding that renaming the road to Tanger Outlets Boulevard will diminish the value of Ms. Benton’s property and will create confusion in regards to 911 service. Further, that there is potential for her property to be developed as retail and the appearance of “Tanger Outlets” will not enhance any other retail developer to locate there. Tina Hobbs, representing The Preserve Apartments, presented opposition of this request, stating that the owner will have marketing expenses with having to change the address. Further asking what plans are in place to ensure safe ingress/egress to the apartment complex, more particularly a traffic light. Hugh Mathews of ETM, representing Tanger Outlets, replied that there are no plans to assist the apartment complex with their marketing costs nor, after meeting with the apartment owner and conducting a traffic study, is there any plan to install a traffic light. Wayne Seay, resident, stated that the citizens deserve to be heard and that changing names of roads has proven to be a bad idea in the past. Susan Mulvaney, resident, presented objection, stating that changing the name is a mistake. Heather Brock, resident, recommended changing the name to a more generic name. Councilman Wall stated that there are still other roads named for the Benton Family, one in the “old” section of Pooler and the other being north of Pooler Parkway. Further, that in the future other developers may request to change road names and should be considered, but if this request is denied, then others would most likely be denied also. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Royal, to rename Benton Boulevard to Tanger Outlets Boulevard from Pooler Parkway south to the proposed round-about at the end of the existing Park Avenue. Motion passed without opposition.
5. Resolution to approve master lease-purchase agreement with Oshkosh Capital for purchase of a 2009 Pierce Arrow XT 100' Platform truck
Mr. Byrd presented a resolution to approve the master lease-purchase with Oshkosh Capital for the purchase of a 2009 Pierce Arrow XT fire truck. Councilman Royal made a motion to approve the resolution, contingent upon the city attorney’s approval. Motion was seconded by Councilman Burke and passed without opposition.
6. Resolution to request a call for a referendum question to be on the May 20, 2014 Primary ballot regarding removal of inventory tax for qualified manufacturers within the incorporated limits of the City
Mr. Byrd asked that this item be tabled. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Royal to table this item. Motion passed without opposition.
7. Underground easements with Georgia Power
Mr. Byrd presented three (3) underground easements, two (2) being for the service to the new gymnasium on South Rogers Street and the other for the lower Floridan well site. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve the easements. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.
There being no further business to discuss, Councilman Wall made a motion to adjourn at approximately 7:38 p.m. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.