March 15, 2001
The meeting was called to order by Mayor Strozier with Councilman Waller leading in prayer.
The minutes of the March 1st meeting were reviewed. Councilman Waller made a motion to approve said minutes, Councilman Tuten seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Strozier opened bids for the surplus 1987 Nissan Pathfinder and they were as follows: Bid #1: Diane Proudfoot -- $2550; Bid #2: Frank D. Taylor -- $2105. Councilman Johnson made a motion to accept the bid of Diane Proudfoot of $2550, the motion was seconded by Councilman Rawlins and it passed with four affirmative votes. Councilman Johnson then made a motion to accept the bid of Frank D. Taylor of $2105 if Ms. Proudfoot failed to meet the payment requirements of her bid in a timely manner. The motion was seconded by Councilman Tuten and passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Strozier informed council that there might be some additional delays in the pursuit of easements to run the water line east on Highway 80 due to the death of Martha Martin. Ms. Martin owned two tracts of land that will need to be crossed to run the waterline. The matter was tabled until contact could be made with family members about the easements.
Council was advised we had not heard from Ms. Sparrow on whether or not the quit claim deeds for property along Cregor Street have been executed, but once she advises us she has the required signatures a meeting of the designated committee will be scheduled.
Bids for the replacement of the roof on City Hall were presented. Councilman Tuten advised council that Danny Outen’’s bid was $4950 on the labor and he estimated the cost of the shingles would be an additional $3850 for a total of $8800. Mayor Strozier reported Walter E. Sapp Roofing Co. provided a bid of $8075 for labor and materials. Council discussed the bids and agreed that if the shingles that were going to be used by Mr. Sapp were the same as the type already on City Hall we should accept his bid. Councilman Johnson made a motion to approve the bid from Walter E. Sapp Roofing Company of $8075 provided the shingles were the same, Councilman Tuten seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council was advised our engineer has forwarded the contract documents for the force main relocation to Douglas Asphalt Co.
The Mayor reported Randy Hackle had moved the storage tank onto a truck, but the truck was still parked on his property on Pine Barren Road. Council was reminded that Mr. Hackle had been informed he had to move the tank and his equipment from the property because he no longer lived at that location and did not qualify for a home occupation business. Mayor Strozier asked that the police department pursue this matter to make sure the tank was moved off the property by next meeting.
Mayor Strozier reported that to the best of his knowledge the asbestos removal has been completed on the structure at #9 W. Hwy 80. The Mayor stated that he would table discussion on the fire department’’s plans for the burning of the structure until next meeting since Councilman Tyler is not here tonight to provide the information. The clerk was instructed to contact Councilman Tyler about approving payment to Action Insulation Co. for the removal of the asbestos.
Mayor Strozier reported that the clerk had contact DOT about the permit applications for traffic signals at Jimmy Deloach/Hwy 80 and Cherry Street/Hwy 80 and was advised the execution of these agreements is needed to authorize a study to determine the need for traffic lights. Also, we have been assured that, if installed, the City will not be required to pay for the cost of the lights or their installation, but the City would assume the maintenance and operation costs of said lights. After a brief discussion, Councilman Waller made a motion to approve the signing of the permits, Councilman Tuten seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Attorney Gerard reported that the charter amendment related to the City elections, included terms of office being four years and terms beginning January 1st, is being handled by the General Assembly. However, the changes related to the limit and the authority of the Municipal Court Judge can be handled as a ""home rule"" matter by ordinance and advertising of these changes is underway. Council was reminded the changes related to the imposing of sentences of imprisonment and community service for violations of the laws and ordinances of Bloomingdale from sixty (60) days to twelve (12) months and increases fines to $1,000 for these violations and contempt. Attorney Gerard stated the ordinance would be on the agenda next month.
Mayor Strozier reported the City had received a letter from Mayor Carter from Pooler advising that they had notified the members of the Senior Citizens Program who live outside the city limits of Pooler that effective March 1, 2001 there will be a fee for attending the center. The fees are $7.00 per day, $30.00 per week or $100 per month, per person. The Mayor expressed his concern that this information is somewhat different than what was discussed at the meeting held with committee members from the cities several months ago. At that meeting, we were advised that the minimum cost would be $3,000 per year, per person rather than the $1200 per year, per person outlined in the letter. Mayor Strozier pointed out that Bloomingdale had asked if there was any way to eliminate some of the expenses so the cost could be reduced, but Pooler indicated there was very little that could be trimmed from their budget. The Mayor stated that even the $100 per month, per person is more than the City could provide. In his letter, Mayor Carter stated that they would be willing to meet again to discuss the situation and possible solutions and Mayor Strozier advised council he felt another meeting may be needed.
Council reviewed a request from Terry and Sharon Johnson to open a feed store behind their residence on the back portion of their property located at #1434 W. Hwy 80. Council was advised the property is zoned RA-1 and the area in which the feed store would be operated is approximately 370+ feet from Hwy 80 and would be accessed by a private driveway. Mayor Strozier informed Ms. Johnson that our current zoning ordinance does not allow this type business in a residential zone. The Mayor asked Attorney Gerard if there was any way to include this type business in a residential/ agricultural zone and he stated that the City could do a ""text amendment"" to allow it as a conditional use. Attorney Gerard reported that since this would require the Planning Commission’’s review and a public hearing it would take some time. The Mayor explained that if these steps were taken and the amendment was approved, the feed store would have to be on its own lot since our zoning ordinance only allows one principal building per tract of land. He pointed out that the City would require a subdivision of the property and at least 25’’ of the back lot would have to abut Hwy 80. Ms. Johnson stated that the surveyor advised her he could prepare another plat if council would let her know what was needed. Mayor Strozier suggested he and Councilman Johnson meet with her at the property to determined if it would be possible to operate this type business behind her residence without causing any problems to the other residents in the area. Councilman Johnson agreed to work with the Mayor on this matter and stated he would be available any afternoon next week. The matter was tabled for further review.
Mayor Strozier reported he had reviewed the insurance renewal information submitted by Palmer & Cay along with a proposal from GIRMA and advised council the proposal from Georgia Interlocal Risk Management Agency was $6100 less than the one from Palmer & Cay. The Mayor pointed out that GIRMA’’s proposal had some increases in deductibles, but their plans increased the limits on several policies and provided additional coverage in some areas. Based on this information and the fact that all our coverage would be through the same company, the Mayor stated he had decided to change our property and liability insurance coverage to GIRMA. Council was advised we needed to adopt a resolution enacting this change effective March 16, 2001 and authorize the Mayor to execute the contract documents. Councilman Johnson made a motion to take said action, Councilman Tuten seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
The Mayor advised council we needed to determine how we planned to obtain the right-of-way deeds for Stagecoach Road so we could proceed with this project. Council discussed whether to get a surveyor to prepare a descriptive plat or to have property owners convey twenty-foot strips of property presently running along and within their property lines bordering on the present road. Councilman Tuten pointed out that Mr. Myers had advised him he would give his right-of-way on the other side of the existing road because the road is already very close to the residence on the property. After a discussion on the matter, council agreed it would probably be best to get a survey and the matter was tabled until prices for said survey could be obtained.
Mayor Strozier reported we had been contacted by EPD about having the water levels in our wells measured. They suggested the levels be checked now and again in the late summer to help determine if there is an impending supply problem. Since special equipment is required to perform the water level measurement, an experienced person, such as a licensed water well contractor, a reputable well pump installed or an experienced licensed water system operator should make the static water level (SWL) and pumping water level (PWL) measurements. EPD advises that since water level changes are not immediate, the tester makes several SWL and PWL measurements at each testing to verify levels are not changing. Ernest Grizzard stated that the water levels are checked two a year as part of the U.S. Geological Survey and our current levels were alright. The Mayor stated that he wanted to make sure we were complying with EPD’’s advice since they would be the agency that we would turn to if problems with our water supply surfaced in the future. Mayor Strozier asked Councilman Tuten to check into this information from the U.S. Geological Survey and make sure it met the requirements as outlined by EPD.
Council was advised the City had received a copy of a resolution adopted by the Savannah Economic Development Authority (SEDA) Board of Directors opposing the proposed natural gas pipeline routes in Chatham County, GA. SEDA reports it plans to file as an intervenor and urges Bloomingdale to do the same. Once Cypress Natural Gas files its application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) anyone can apply as an intervenor and object to the proposed pipeline route. Attorney Gerard has talked with their representative who has agreed to assist in the process and states that for a minimum cost the City can apply as an intervenor. After a brief discussion, Councilman Waller made a motion to approve the City’’s filing as an intervenor with the FERC, Councilman Rawlins seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council discussed questions that had been raised concerning the requirements for access/utility easements in regards to subdivisions. The City currently requires the entire 60’’ width of an access easement to be dedicated to the roadway, but in some areas the utilities are also allowed in these easements. Councilman Tuten pointed out that if the easement included utilities there would be more control as to exactly where the lines would be located and he felt the 60’’ easement would be adequate for development of the roadway and installation of utilities. After the discussion, the Mayor asked Attorney Gerard to check to see how other cities were addressing the issue and report back to council at the next meeting.
Mayor Strozier reported the City had received a request from Coastal Georgia RDC to appoint a qualified person to serve on the Historic Preservation Advisory Council. The Mayor pointed out that the appointee should be able to attend quarterly meetings held at various historic places throughout coastal Georgia and willing to serve for a three-year term. Neither the Mayor nor councilmembers had any suggestions for nominees so the Mayor stated he would include this information in the upcoming newsletter and maybe someone would volunteer to serve on this committee.
Council was advised the GMA Board of Directors is recommending the GMA membership approve and adopt the amended and restated articles of incorporation for the Georgia Municipal Association, Inc. The GMA Board approved these changes at the Mayors’’ Day meeting in January. The original articles of incorporation were adopted in 1969 and this update will ensure that GMA has the proper corporate powers to continue providing new and improved services to its members. After a brief discussion, Councilman Tuten made a motion to approve and adopt the changes, Councilman Johnson seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Strozier stated that since council adopted the telecommunications ordinance at the March 1st meeting, he suggested we consider lifting the moratorium on construction of telecommunications towers/antennae in the City that was enacted on January 18, 2001. Councilman Tuten made a motion to lift said moratorium, Councilman Johnson seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
The Mayor presented a recombination of lots in Stagecoach Village located on Godley Road for council’’s review. It was noted that Lot #15 was being reduced in size with the acreage to be recombined with the remaining property of East Coast Utilities, Inc., but the boundaries of the other tract were not on this plat. Attorney Gerard reviewed the plat and advised council that he felt it would be acceptable to show the exact dimensions and total acreage of the property to be deleted from Lot #15 and added to the other tract in lieu of having the plat redrawn to include the larger tract. Councilman Johnson made a motion to approve the recombination of these two tracts provided this information was added to the plat, Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with three affirmative votes. Councilman Tuten abstained from voting.
Mayor Strozier recognized Mike Wedincamp who stated that he had met with the county engineer and was advised that the reason the City of Pooler was able to control the access off Pooler Parkway was that they had filed for jurisdiction. Mr. Wedincamp asked that Bloomingdale file for jurisdiction of the Jimmy Deloach Parkway so they could control the issuance of permits for access to this roadway. The Mayor asked if the City of Pooler or the City of Savannah have filed for jurisdiction on the Jimmy Deloach Parkway and Mr. Wedincamp stated he was not sure. Council discussed this matter and the Mayor asked Attorney Gerard to check into the requirements for this process.
Fett Burke submitted prices to council on a new mower that would replace the two flail mowers currently being used by the City. The cost was approximately $17,000, but had not been included in the 2000/2001 budget. Mr. Burke stated that the dealer would bring the mower out for a demonstration. Mayor Strozier asked that he get with members of the council and set up a time for the demonstration. The Mayor pointed out that if the council agreed to purchase the mower we would have to make arrangements to include it in the upcoming budget.
Council was advised that Ernest Grizzard’’s son, Cory, had been competing in state and national wrestling matches and had done quite well. He placed first in region, first in state and fifth in nationals in his weight class.
Chief Anderson reported that he had only received a few applicants for police officers and had been advised that many departments were also having problems filling vacancies.
The Mayor reported we needed to discuss some legal matters.
Councilman Johnson made a motion to adjourn into executive session, Councilman Rawlins seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Executive Session :(a signed copy of the affidavit as required by the Open Meetings law is attached)
Councilman Johnson made a motion to return to the general meeting, Councilman Tuten seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
The accounts payable were reviewed. Councilman Tuten made a motion to pay the bills, Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Being no further business, Councilman Rawlins made a motion to adjourn. Councilman Johnson seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes. The meeting adjourned at 9:00pm.
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