The regular meeting of the Pooler City Council was held on May 6, 2013. Mayor Mike Lamb called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Present were 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. Councilman Bruce Allen was absent due to work.
The invocation was given by Mayor Lamb and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Mayor Lamb.
The minutes of the previous meeting were approved as printed upon a motion by Councilwoman Benton, seconded by Councilman Burke, with no opposition.
The minutes of the April 1stExecutive Session were approved upon a motion by Councilman Wall, seconded by Councilman Royal, with no opposition.
Report from the Standing Committees:
Councilman Burke presented bills in excess of $1500.00 for payment 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 252 calls from April 1stto May 5th, totaling 817 calls for the year and that the police department responded to 1904 calls, totaling 11,206 for the year.
Councilman Royal made a motion to add Item #7 under New Business to the agenda. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.
Councilwoman Benton reported that the street and drainage departments performed routine maintenance.
Councilwoman Benton made a motion to add Item #8 under New Business to the agenda. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.
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 dance and tumbling classes continue and that registration for youth summer basketball has begun.
Councilwoman Benton reported that 12 new single family residential and four (4) commercial permits were issued since the last meeting, totaling 67 single family and 24 commercial permits, with 1836 inspections performed.
Councilman Burke made a motion to add Item #9 under New Business to the agenda. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.
Karen Robertson, Executive Director, Pooler Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau, presented an update on the Chamber’s activities.
Under OLD BUSINESS the following was discussed:
1. Proposal from Hussey, Gay, Bell & DeYoung for services to develop a proposed ADA Transition Plan as required by Georgia Department of Transportation
The Georgia Department of Transportation EEO Office requires that an ADA Transition Plan be developed. Mr. Byrd stated that the City’s engineer has reviewed the request and has submitted a proposal to include the initial inventory fee of $3500.00 with the preparation and submittal fee proposed at an hourly rate. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve the proposal, not to exceed $7500.00. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.
Under NEW BUSINESS the following was discussed:
1. Preliminary construction plan for Somersby, Phase 2-C
The construction plan for Phase 2-C of Somersby Subdivision includes 44 single family lots and is a continuation of Phase 2-A and B. Councilman Burke made a motion, seconded by Councilwoman Benton, to approve the plan, contingent upon EPD approval. Motion passed without opposition.
2. Acceptance of maintenance bond/approval of final plat for Godley Industrial Park including fire station site, lift station site and Nordic Drive right-of-way
The plat includes Fire Station #5, a lift station site and the Nordic Drive right-of-way. Mr. Byrd stated that a final inspection was performed on April 4thwith the Public Works Department recommending the project to begin its 24-month maintenance period. Councilman Wall made a motion to accept the maintenance bond in the amount of $299,080.60 and approve the final plat, contingent upon the city attorney approving the bond. Motion was seconded by Councilman Burke and passed without opposition.
3. Alcoholic beverage license for Reed R. Blair III for Bootleggers at 1017 E. Hwy 80, Suite 8
Reed R. Blair III has submitted an application for a license to serve liquor, beer and wine at an establishment (bar) he recently purchased. Mr. Byrd stated that Police Chief Mark Revenew has performed the necessary background investigation. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Burke, to approve the license. Motion passed without opposition.
4. Award bid for demolition of building at 102 S. Chestnut Street (formerly Foam ‘n Brush Car Wash)
Mr. Byrd presented four (4) bids for the demolition, grading and grassing of the car wash property recently purchased by the City. After discussion, Councilman Wall made a motion to award the low bidder, Sitework Construction, LLC, in the amount of $4961.00. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.
5. Potential condemnation of property at 211 W. Highway 80
Mr. Byrd stated that the City has purchased the property adjacent to the west of city hall (106 S. Chestnut Street) and the Foam n’ Brush Car Wash property (102 S. Chestnut Street), with negotiations on purchasing the shopping center (211 W. Highway 80) reaching a stalemate. Mr. Scheer presented the timeline of events leading to tonight’s potential condemnation, which included the hiring of special counsel, Attorney George Lewis, and stated that the two (2) main issues are to build a new city hall and to keep the central government facilities in the same area. Further, that after a title search of the property, it was found that there are two (2) mortgages, totaling over $3.2 million, and after intense negotiations with the lenders, the first lien holder has refused to negotiate. Mr. Lewis stated that the process will be through the “special master” method, explaining the procedure, which can take anywhere from 75 days to one (1) to two (2) years. Attorney Ken Royal, representing the property owner, Sagar of Pooler LLC, stating that he is working with the bank on a resolution, for a short sale, but that the bank has yet to accept a written offer. Tenants of the shopping center, Melissa Hall of WhiteWay Laundry and Glenn Taulbee of Kathleen’s Beauty Shop, expressed concern over relocation expenses, questioning whether they would be compensated. Business owners Jay Patel, Edwin Smith, Frank Stanhope and Anna Balph expressed similar concerns, adding that further negotiations need to be considered, questioning the specific purpose. Mr. Scheer reiterated the property would be used for public purposes, to establish a central government area to better accommodate the citizens. Residents Chad Morgan, Anil Patel, Helen Hostetler and Jo Ann Burchette expressed opposition of the condemnation. After further discussion, Councilwoman Benton made a motion to begin the process of condemnation of the property at 211 W. Highway 80, to keep the central government intact for the public purpose of a city hall and accessory buildings. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed with Councilman Burke opposing. Councilman Wall stated that the decision to begin this process was difficult and that he hopes an agreeable price will be reached to bring a short sale.
6. Resolution regarding Budget Adjustment 2013-01
Ms. McNeely presented a resolution regarding Budget Adjustment 2013-01 (attached to and made a part of these minutes) for the General Fund and Water & Sewer Fund. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Royal, to approve. Motion passed without opposition.
7. Easement for Georgia Power Company to place distribution line to service aerators at wastewater treatment plant
Mr. Byrd presented an easement required for Georgia Power to place a distribution line to service the aerators at the ponds near the wastewater treatment plant. Councilman Royal made a motion to approve the easement. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.
8. Actuarial Study of City’s Pension Plan Sustainability
Councilwoman Benton made a motion to approve The Segal Company to perform a study of the City’s Pension Plan Sustainability. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.
9. Acceptance of additional Local Option Sales Tax revenue funds
Councilman Burke made a motion to accept additional funds from the delay of the distribution of the Local Option Sales Tax revenue funds. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.
Donna Gonnsen, resident of Brighton Woods Subdivision, addressed Council in regards to her concern over the smell coming from the wastewater treatment plant. Mr. Byrd stated that aerators are being installed in the ponds to help alleviate some of the smell.
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 an