Council Minutes June 21, 2004

CITY OF POOLER
CITY COUNCIL MINUTES
June 21, 2004

The regular meeting of the Pooler City Council was held on June 21, 2004. Mayor Mike Lamb called the meeting to order at 6:20 p.m. (delayed due to the public hearing held prior). Present were Councilmen Bruce Allen, Travis Cowart, Jr., Mike Royal, Wayne Seay, Stevie Wall and Councilwoman Rebecca Benton. City Manager Dennis Baxter and City Attorney Steve Scheer were also present.

The invocation was given by Councilman Allen and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Councilman Royal.

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

Report from the Standing Committees:

FINANCE

Councilman Allen presented bills for payment and made a motion to pay, subject to funds. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.

PUBLIC SAFETY

Councilman Wall gave the fire and police reports.

STREETS/DRAINAGE

Councilman Cowart reported that the street and drainage departments have performed routine maintenance and that the paving projects were complete for this year.

WATER/SEWER

Councilman Royal reported that the water and sewer departments have performed routine maintenance.

RECREATION

Councilman Seay reported that the GRPA tournaments begin this week, with the 14 & under boys baseball team traveling to Baxley and the 10 & under boys baseball team traveling to Garden City.

PERSONNEL

Councilman Seay reported that he is working on a plan for raises for employees.

BUILDING/ZONING

Councilwoman Benton reported that 15 new single family residential permits have been issued, totaling 152 for the year, with 3061 inspections performed and 6 new commercial permits being issued. 

Peggy Cowan, President of the Board of Directors, Pooler Area Chamber of Commerce, presented former Mayor Buddy Carter with a plaque in appreciation of his years of service to the City of Pooler.

Under OLD BUSINESS the following was discussed:

1. Reconsideration of approval of final PUD and development standards for Southwest Quadrant, Phase 6

Mr. Baxter presented this request from the developers of Southwest Quadrant. Cotter Christian of Savannah Quarters was present and stated that all the lots are over 7000 square feet, have 25' front setbacks and have a minimum lot width of 55 feet. After discussion, Councilwoman Benton made a motion to approve this final PUD. Motion was seconded by Councilman Seay and passed with Councilman Allen opposing.

2. Second Reading on amendment to Soil Erosion & Sedimentation Control ordinance

Mr. Baxter presented this amendment to the Soil Erosion & Sedimentation Control ordinance, stating that it was mandated by the State of Georgia. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve this amendment on Second Reading. Motion was seconded by Councilman Allen and passed without opposition. 

Mr. Baxter stated that at the last Council meeting Mr. George Seabrooks addressed Council in regards to information he had received in the past (1980s) about water being promised to the Wildcat Dam Road area and that he has researched this matter and found no evidence of any grant received to run water lines to this area. Further, that no evidence was found as to any promises being made by the City Council at that time.

Under NEW BUSINESS the following was discussed:

1. Request for variances on new entrance sign for the Mighty Eighth Air Force Heritage Museum and JCB

A public hearing was held prior wherein the petitioner was not present. Mr. Baxter presented this request for three (3) variances on a new entrance sign for the Mighty Eighth Air Force Heritage Museum and JCB. After discussion, Councilman Cowart made a motion to deny this request, based on it not meeting the first and third standards for granting a variance. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition. 

2. Request for a “conditional use” to operate a family home daycare at 412 Winskie Road

A public hearing was held prior wherein several residents on Winskie Road presented opposition to this request. Mr. Baxter stated that Planning & Zoning has recommended approval, but that the City’s ordinance allowed for the hours of operation for a home occupation to be from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Allen, to deny this request based on the residents’ opposition. Discussion followed, wherein Councilman Seay explained that this item was one of the most difficult issues Council has had to consider. Further, that this matter puts citizens against citizens and affects the community. Mayor Lamb questioned if there were any other businesses on Winskie Road, which Mr. MacPherson replied that there were three (3) current businesses. These businesses are telephone-use only, with no customers visiting the home. Wendy Andrews, local business owner, asked the Council to consider the impact their decision has in getting new businesses to locate in the City of Pooler. Mayor Lamb called for the vote on the motion. Councilman Cowart, Councilman Royal and Councilman Seay voted in opposition, thus creating a tie. Mayor Lamb then voted in favor of the motion. Request denied. Mr. Scheer explained that the residents’ complaints regarding noise and hazards were valid reasons for denial. 

3. Release of maintenance bond for Southernland Subdivision (formerly Williams Hollow)

Mr. Baxter presented this request to release the maintenance bond for Southernland Subdivision, stating that the public works department has done final inspections. Councilman Wall made a motion, seconded by Councilman Allen, to approve this request. Motion passed without opposition. 

4. Approval of site plan for Alta Towne Lake Apartments

Mr. Baxter presented the site plan for Alta Towne Lake Apartments, stating that all the engineer’ s comments have been addressed. Councilwoman Benton made a motion to approve. Motion was seconded by Councilman Cowart and passed without opposition. 

5. Approval of Intergovernmental Agreement for Distribution of 2003-2008 SPLOTS Proceeds

Mr. Baxter presented this Agreement for the distribution of the 2003-2008 Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax proceeds. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve, noting that the first item on the City’s list of projects was the new recreation park. Motion was seconded by Councilwoman Benton and passed without opposition. 

6. Approval of proposal for surveying services for Newton Cemetery

Mr. Baxter presented this proposal from EMC Engineering Services, Inc. in an amount not to exceed $7600.00. Councilman Wall made a motion to approve this proposal. Motion was seconded by Councilman Allen and passed with Councilwoman Benton opposing. 

There being no further business to discuss, Councilman Cowart made a motion to adjourn at approximately 7:24 p.m. Motion was seconded by Councilman Wall and passed without opposition.

Public Hearing

A public hearing was held prior to the regular City Council meeting on June 21, 2004. Mayor Mike Lamb called the hearing to order at 5:45 p.m. Present were Councilmen Bruce Allen, Travis Cowart, Jr., Mike Royal, Wayne Seay, Stevie Wall and Councilwoman Rebecca Benton. City Manager Dennis Baxter and City Attorney Steve Scheer were also present.

The purpose of this hearing was to discuss:

1) Requested variances on a new entrance sign for the Mighty Eighth Air Force Heritage Museum and JCB - JCB has petitioned for three (3) variances to install a new entrance sign in the right-of-way of Bourne Avenue. The present sign is currently located in Georgia Department of Transportation right-of-way. The first variance is to allow the new sign to be located in the city’s right-of-way and the second and third variances are for size (134 square feet) and height (17 feet). The proposed sign will be 22 feet in height with 144 square feet per sign face. The petitioner was not present.

2) A requested “conditional use” to operate a family home daycare at 412 Winskie Road - David and Rebecca MacPherson have petitioned for a “conditional use” to operate a family home daycare at their residence to keep no more than six (6) children. Mrs. MacPherson addressed Council, stating that she has been keeping children at her home for two (2) years and did not know that she needed a license. Further, that she previously worked at a Christian daycare and had many years of daycare experience. Janet Long, resident and owner of a family home daycare, addressed Council in regards to the need for this type of service, stating that she used to operate a daycare at her home on Winskie Road several years ago. Further, Mrs. MacPherson has been approved by the State of Georgia for a daycare and that people prefer to have their children stay in a home daycare. Mr. Danny Smith and Ms. Shanna Hobbs, whose children stay with Mrs. MacPherson, spoke in favor of this request, stating that the City has limited resources for childcare. Mr. Robert Morgan, resident of Winskie Road, spoke on behalf of the 31 residents who have signed a petition opposing this request, basing their opposition on three (3) issues the residents are concerned about as follows: that the proposed use will adversely affect the existing uses of adjacent properties; that the proposed use will cause a nuisance, increasing traffic and noise; and that the proposed use will adversely impact property values. Mr. Morgan stated that the residents, especially the elderly, want a quiet neighborhood to enjoy their retirement. John and Carolyn Roberts, Daniel Frawley and Carol Swinson, all residents on Winskie Road, expressed their concern which included increased traffic and noise, and Margie Wilson stated that the residents were not questioning the character of the MacPhersons. Further, that the residents just want to protect their neighborhood. Debbie Marvel, resident on Whatley Street stated that Mrs. MacPherson has a clean, safe home. 

There being no further business to discuss, the hearing was adjourned at approximately 6:12 p.m.

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