The regular meeting of the Pooler City Council was held on February 19, 2007. Mayor Mike Lamb called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Present were Councilmen Mike Royal, Wayne Seay, Billy Stanley, Stevie Wall and Councilwoman Rebecca Benton. City Manager Dennis Baxter, Assistant City Manager Robbie Byrd and City Attorney Steve Scheer were also present. Councilman Bruce Allen was absent due to having to work.
The invocation was given by Mr. Baxter and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Councilman Seay.
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 Stanley presented bills for payment and made a motion to pay, subject to funds. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.
Major Mark Revenue reported that the police department responded to 1253 calls since the last meeting. Chief Jay Hillis stated that the fire department responded to 55 calls, one being a structure fire.
STREET/DRAINAGE/PARKS & TREES
Councilman Seay reported that the street, drainage and parks and trees departments have performed routine maintenance.
Councilman Wall reported that the water and sewer departments have performed routine maintenance and that the wastewater treatment plant is meeting all requirements.
Councilman Royal reported that this is the final week for basketball games and that the pee wee and midget teams will be playing in the CAA tournament. Further, that baseball and softball signups end February 23rd.
Councilwoman Benton reported that 24 new single family residential, 10 attached unit, eight (8) stacked condominium and four (4) commercial permits were issued since the last meeting, totaling 83 residential and 16 attached unit permits for the year, with 1803 inspections performed.
Anne Smith, Director of the Pooler Crossroads Chamber of Commerce, presented a plaque to the group “Firewall”, led by Billie Tyler, who were the winners of the Flying Pig Festival Chili Cook-Off. Ms. Smith also presented statues to Major Revenew and Chief Hillis in appreciation of the police and fire departments.
Jean Carter and Linda Uberall of Towne Lake Homeowner’s Association presented a checks in the amount of $306.45 each to the police and fire departments, representing proceeds from the Association’s “National Night Out” held last August.
Under OLD BUSINESS the following was discussed:
1. Requested conditional use to allow construction of a convenience store/gas station
at 860 W. Highway 80
Mr. Baxter presented this item which was tabled at the last meeting to allow the preliminary plan for an Enmark Station to be amended to show the entire project in the commercial area, which has been done. Lucille Dowd, resident in Worthington Estates Subdivision, addressed Council, requesting that Councilman Wall step down from his seat due to a conflict of interest based on him residing in Worthington and representing those in the subdivision who are opposed to this project. Councilman Wall replied that in the past, and present, he has represented all areas of Pooler, in particular those affected by the development (Wardlaw) adjacent to the west side of Worthington, where he recommended a large undisturbed buffer be provided. Further, that he has supported people who live in other areas where commercial development was proposed next to their neighborhoods. Councilman Wall stated his concern about some residents who signed the Dowd’s petitions being not sure of what they had signed. Mrs. Dowd replied that her husband explained what the project was about and maybe there was someone who did not understand. Councilman Wall asked Mr. Scheer to address the issue of whether there is a conflict of interest. Mr. Scheer responded that there was no conflict of interest unless a financial interest exists, which does not. Judy Durden, resident adjacent to the proposed Enmark station, stated opposition to this request due to potential noise, hours of operation and the fact that the gas tanks will be only 70' from her house. Elsie Evans, resident of Worthington, stated that she believes Enmark will maintain the property and will be better than having a restaurant or strip shopping center there. Holly Young, one of the owners of the property, addressed Council in regards to having to sell this property based on increasing costs of taxes and insurance, no matter what happens with this petition. Ms. Young reminded Council that Enmark has agreed to leave 1.15 acres as a natural buffer with plenty of trees and that the property will be deed restricted which will pass to future property owners and that a shopping center (10,000 sq ft) would not require a conditional use since it is a permitted use. Further, that this property must be developed to its fullest potential. Ms. Young presented pictures of the rear of shopping centers and Enmark Stations in the City, noting that the area behind the shopping centers were less attractive than the rear of the Enmark Stations. Stephen Dowd, resident of Worthington, stated that he is in favor of this project because greenspace is being provided. Sandy Glick, owner of the adjacent residential property, presented a petition signed by people who are opposed to this project based on it being too large to have only one (1) entrance, the number of pumps and the potential for additional traffic where this is already a problem in the area. Mrs. Glick asked that the project be downsized. Robert Folmar, resident of Worthington, stated that the project does not meet the standards for a conditional use. Lanell Edge, resident, stated that she signed the petition but has concerns about property value decreasing, lighting and noise. Duane Talley, resident of Worthington, presented opposition to this request, stating that the gas tanks were to be moved from the east side to the west side of this property (as stated in the Planning & Zoning meeting), which has not been done. David Harmon asked that this project be allowed since the trees are being kept and it is the most viable option. Jay Harrison, resident, stated that in years’ past the neighbors of Worthington and Gleason Heights have pulled together on similar proposals, asking what happened. Further, that he is opposed to this project. John Weber, resident of Worthington, also presented opposition, stating that quality of life will be affected. Tommy Shearouse, resident, commented on the fact that his land on Highway 80 is zoned commercial on the front, with the back portion being residential, reminding Council that the residents in the neighborhoods know that the property in question was zoned commercial. Further, that there is room for cars and trucks to enter and exit. Chuck Grile, resident of Worthington, stated that development will happen, reiterating the fact that Enmark is willing to provide a 150' buffer, when another developer may not. Other residents presented opposition to this request. Scotty Fletcher stated that this area needs something with less traffic. Bonnie Eminger expressed opposition. Councilman Wall asked Mr. Scheer for an interpretation of the criteria for granting a conditional use. Mr. Scheer replied that the criteria is outlined in order for Council to use their discretion to determine if all seven (7) apply. Mayor Lamb read aloud the list of criteria
2. Second Reading on zoning text amendment to add “non-profit military museum” to the definition section and to the list of permitted uses in C-2 districts
Mr. Baxter presented a zoning text amendment to add “non-profit military museum” to be able to permit a columbaria at the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum to inter ashes of veterans. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilwoman Benton, to approve this amendment of Second Reading. Motion passed without opposition.
3. Second Reading on zoning text amendment to change parking lot dimensions in
Mr. Baxter presented a zoning text amendment to change the parking lot dimensions in commercial districts from eight (8) feet to nine (9) feet to comply with the chart that is provided in the ordinance. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve this amendment on Second Reading. Motion was seconded by Councilman Seay and passed without opposition.
Under NEW BUSINESS the following was discussed:
1. Approval of the Hunt Club Amenity Infrastructure and construction plan for roadway
extension located in Wynn Tract
Mr. Baxter presented this request from Beazer Homes for approval of the construction plan which includes the infrastructure for the roadway extension to serve the Hunt Club amenity site, stating that all of the engineer’s comments have been addressed. Councilwoman Benton made a motion, seconded by Councilman Wall, to approve this plan. Motion passed without opposition.
2. Approval of construction plan for Phase II of Memorial Boulevard
Mr. Baxter presented the construction plan for Phase II of Memorial Boulevard (spine road) which will serve the Harmony Tract A, a commercial development project. All of the engineer’s comments have been addressed, therefore, Councilman Wall made a motion to approve the construction plan. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.
3. Approval of minor subdivision of 1.26 acres into three (3) lots on Houston Street
Mr. Baxter presented this request from R. S. Mills to subdivide 1.26 acres into three (3) lots, to create a third lot to allow his granddaughter and her husband to build a home, stating that this request meets the requirements of the subdivision ordinance.
4. Approval of boundary plat for transfer of property of 36.983 acres, Tract 12,
Southwest Quadrant @ Savannah Quarters
Mr. Baxter presented this request from Southwest Quarter Holdings, LLC for approval of the boundary plat for transfer of property (36.893 acres), known as Tract 12, Southwest Quadrant @ Savannah Quarters. Mr. Baxter stated that Planning & Zoning and staff have recommended approval. Councilwoman Benton made a motion, seconded by Councilman Wall, to approve this plat. Motion passed without opposition.
5. Approval of recombination plat for Parcels 2A and 2B, Savannah Quarters
Mr. Baxter presented the recombination plat for Parcels 2A and 2B, Savannah Quarters, stating that the internal property line between the two parcels has been revised to better match the development plans of the purchaser. Councilwoman Benton made a motion to approve this recombination. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.
6. Approval of site plan for NRS Warehouse located on Dean Forest Road
Mr. Baxter presented the site plan for the proposed NRS Warehouse on Dean Forest Road, stating that all of the engineer’s comments have been addressed. Further, that Planning & Zoning have recommended approval, contingent upon confirmation that the conditions have been met that were set forth in the re-zoning of this property and that Council address the need for a drainage study.
7. Request from New Harvest International Ministries to obtain water and sewer
services from Consolidated Utilities for construction of new church at 1510
Mr. Baxter presented this request from Ken Terrell, Pastor of New Harvest International Ministries, to obtain water and sewer services from Consolidated Utilities for a new church that is proposed on property the church has purchased at 1510 Quacco Road (newly annexed area). After discussion, Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Seay, to approve this request. Motion passed without opposition.
8. Approval of Agreement for Services with CityScape Consultants, Inc. to assist with
Mr. Baxter presented an Agreement for Services with CityScape Consultants, Inc. to assist the City with adopting a new telecommunication ordinance similar to one that is being adopted by the City of Savannah and Chatham County.
9. Approval of Easement Agreement for Conaway Branch Canal Drainage Improvements
Mr. Baxter presented an Easement Agreement between the City of Pooler and Chatham County which is needed in order to allow the County to acquire 11,532 square feet of temporary construction easement on property owned by the City that abuts the Conaway Branch Canal. After discussion, Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Seay, to approve the Agreement. Motion passed without opposition.
10. Approval of budget adjustment for 2007 for water department
Mr. Baxter presented a budget adjustment in the amount of $100,000, decreasing account #57.9002 (Reserve Account) and increasing account #54.1419 (Chloramine System for Water Wells) to fund the purchase of the ammonia feed system for the water wells that was approved by Council on February 5, 2007. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve this budget adjustment. Motion was seconded by Councilman Royal and passed without opposition.
11. First Reading on amendment to tree ordinance
Mr. Baxter presented an amendment to the tree ordinance, stating that Mr. Byrd has recommended decreasing the value of a reimbursed tree to equal a health live oak with a dbh of two (2) inches to give developers an incentive to reimburse the City for unused trees. Further, that the reimbursement value will be multiplied by the number of unused trees needed to meet the requirements of the tree ordinance. Councilwoman Benton made a motion, seconded by Councilman Wall, to approve this amendment to the tree ordinance. Motion passed without opposition.
There being no further business to discuss, Councilman Wall made a motion to adjourn at approximately p.m. Motion was seconded by Councilman Seay and passed without opposition.