Council Minutes August 3, 2009

CITY OF POOLER
CITY COUNCIL MINUTES
August 3, 2009


The regular meeting of the Pooler City Council was held on August 3, 2009. Mayor Mike Lamb called the meeting to order at 6:10 p.m. (delayed due to the public hearing held prior). Present were Councilmen Travis Cowart, Mike Royal, Wayne Seay, Stevie Wall and Councilwoman Rebecca Benton. City Manager Robbie Byrd and City Attorney Steve Scheer were also present. Councilman Bruce Allen was absent due to work.

The invocation was given by Councilman Cowart and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Councilman Seay.

The minutes of the previous meeting were approved as printed upon a motion by Councilman Cowart, seconded by Councilman Wall, with no opposition.

Report from the Standing Committees:
FINANCE
Councilman Seay presented the accounts payable information for July.

PUBLIC SAFETY
Chief C. E. Chan stated that the police department responded to 1365 calls during the period of July 17th through the 31st and Fire Chief Wade Simmons reported that the fire department responded to 163 in July, totaling 1116 for the year. Further, that the department is in receipt of a check from the City of Port Wentworth for reimbursement for fuel used during mutual aid responses.

STREET/DRAINAGE/ PARKS & TREES
Councilman Cowart reported that the street, drainage and parks and trees departments have performed routine maintenance.

WATER/SEWER
Councilman Wall reported that the water and sewer departments have performed routine maintenance and that all parameters are being met at the wastewater treatment plant.

RECREATION
Councilman Royal reported that football practice has begun, with nine (9) teams participating, six (6) of which will play in-house. Further, that soccer signups have ended, with 12 teams participating. 

BUILDING/ZONING
Councilwoman Benton reported that five (5) new single family residential permits and one (1) commercial permit has been issued since the last meeting, totaling 90 single family residential and 15 commercial permits for the year, with 2616 inspections performed year to date.

Mayor Lamb presented a 30-year service pin to Major David Burke, thanking him for his service with the police department, congratulating him on his upcoming retirement.

Kim Griffin, President, Pooler Crossroads of Chamber of Commerce, presented a report of recent and upcoming events.

Julie Gerbsch, 7th District Savannah-Chatham County School Board Representative and Otis Brock, Chief Operating Officer, addressed Council in regards to plans for redistricting within the school system.

Under OLD BUSINESS the following was discussed:

1. Second Reading on amendment to ad valorem tax ordinance
Mr. Byrd presented an amendment to the City’s ordinance regarding late fees and penalties on ad valorem taxes and to amend the minimum amount charged for real property to be consistent with State requirements. Councilman Cowart made a motion to approve the amendment on Second Reading. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.

Under NEW BUSINESS the following was discussed:

1. Requested 36" decorative fence height variance for Godley Station Animal Hospital
A public hearing was held prior wherein no opposition was presented. David Howes, owner of Godley Station Animal Hospital, has petitioned the City for a 36" decorative fence height variance to be able to place a six foot (6') decorative fence at 127 Canal Street. After discussion, Councilman Cowart made a motion to approve the variance as presented, based on Planning & Zoning’s recommendation and the request meeting #1 and #3 of the criteria for granting a variance. Motion was seconded by Councilman Seay and passed with Councilman Royal and Councilman Wall opposing.

2. Approval of recombination plat of Lot 77 and Lot 76B also known as 1119 Plantation Drive
Mr. Harold Conley, owner, presented a request to recombine two (2) separate parcels due to his purchase of one-half of the adjacent lot several years ago. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Cowart, to approve the recombination plat. Motion passed without opposition.

3. Acceptance of maintenance bond for Avala at Savannah Quarters
Mr. Byrd presented a request from the developer of Avala at Savannah Quarters, stating that a final inspection was performed. Councilman Cowart made a motion to accept the maintenance bond, contingent upon the city attorney approving the bond. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition.

4. Approval of water and sewer agreement with Morgan Lakes, LLC
Mr. Byrd presented a water and sewer agreement with Morgan Lakes, LLC to cover their portion of the Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority loan. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Cowart, to approve the agreement. Motion passed without opposition.

5. Award bid for new building addition at public works
Mr. Byrd presented bids for the new building addition at public works, noting the low bid in the amount of $238,999.98. Councilman Wall made a motion to award the bid to the low bidder, Marchese Construction. Motion was seconded by Councilman Cowart and passed without opposition.

6. Approval of purchase and sale agreement for 2.31 acre tract of land adjacent to wastewater treatment plant
Mr. Byrd presented a purchase and sale agreement for a 2.31 acre tract of land adjacent to the wastewater treatment plant, presently owned by the Seabrook family. After discussion, Councilman Wall made a motion to approve the agreement, contingent upon the closing by date being changed to October 1, 2009 and the city attorney’s approval, to include confirmation of a clear title. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.

Steve Hartley, resident, expressed appreciation to the fire department for their assistance when his wife was recently injured in a fall. Mr. Hartley then asked if Council has approved any amendments to the budget of the Pooler Crossroads Chamber of Commerce, which Mayor Lamb replied that Council was not aware of any amendments.

There being no further business to discuss nor the need for an executive session, Councilman Wall made a motion to adjourn at approximately 7:10 p.m. Motion was seconded by Councilman Cowart and passed without opposition.

Public Hearing

A public hearing was held on August 3, 2009 prior to the regular City Council meeting. Mayor Mike Lamb called the hearing to order at 5:45 p.m. Present were Councilmen Travis Cowart, Mike Royal, Wayne Seay, Stevie Wall and Councilwoman Rebecca Benton. City Manager Robbie Byrd and City Attorney Steve Scheer were also present.

The purpose of this hearing was to discuss a requested 36" decorative fence height variance for Godley Station Animal Hospital. David Howes, owner of Godley Station Animal Hospital, presented this request to allow him to place a six foot (6') decorative fence at 127 Canal Street. Mr. Howes stated that the fence will encompass three (3) sides of his property and will be aesthetically pleasing from view of Pooler Parkway, adding that due to the retention ditch that is located between the building and the Parkway, the fence will not appear to be six feet (6') high. Councilman Wall expressed concern that if the fence is allowed, it will create a potential for dogs to be let run loose and to make the area appear like someone’s backyard. Councilman Wall questioned whether the dogs would remain on leashes and the number that would be outside at the same time. Mr. Howes replied that he has six (6) staff members who will be taking the dogs outside and that leashes would be used except during times that obedience classes were held, if so scheduled in the future, with supervision of the dogs to be provided at all times. Councilman Wall asked if the fence could be placed on one (1) side only, on the southern portion of the lot. Councilman Cowart stated that Planning & Zoning has recommended approval based on the request meeting the criteria for granting a variance. Further, that dogs would remain on leashes as stated earlier, with six (6) dogs outside at one time. 

There being no further discussion, the hearing was adjourned at approximately 6:03 p.m.

City of Pooler, GA | 100 US HW 80, Pooler, GA 31322
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