July 21, 2005
Mayor Rozier called the meeting to order with Councilman Myrick leading in prayer. The minutes of the June 16, 2005 meeting were reviewed. Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the minutes, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Attorney Dickey reported that Judge Lane had accepted an amendment to the City’s original lawsuit to include information related to EPD’s statement that the moratorium that had been placed on the groundwater permits in this area was not needed since there was no problem with salt water intrusion and he felt that this recent development would be beneficial to the City’s case. Attorney Dickey stated that there should be a ruling on our lawsuit in the next couple of weeks.
Mayor Rozier reported that he had contacted representatives with Thomas & Hutton regarding the drainage problems at #105 Pine Street that were discussed at the last meeting and was advised that this area is a part of the City that will be addressed in the Master Drainage Plan. The Mayor advised council that at his request they were to come out tomorrow to look at this specific area and pointed out that he would also have them check out the drainage at #212 Oak Street and #102 Chestnut Street since the City has received complaints from citizens living at these locations.
Council was advised that the City received notification that Church & Lynn Streets have been approved for financial participation from the State and the paperwork required for preparation of a City Contract has been executed and returned to the DOT.
The Mayor reported that the City had received one (1) bid on the surplus 1995 Ford Garbage Truck and pointed out that the minimum bid was set at $3,000. The bid was received from Edward Edge with Savannah Waste in the amount of $3,000. After a brief discussion, Councilman Myrick made a motion to accept the bid, Councilman Johnson seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier presented a request from Anthony Wiruth to obtain a home occupation license to operate the “office only” of a semi-truck leasing business from his residence located at #7 Boulevard Street. Mr. Wiruth has indicated that there will be no outside traffic related to the business coming to the residence and he will be the only employee. Mr. Wiruth also advised council that there will be no trucks parked at the residence since he owns another lot outside of the City that will be used for this purpose. Based on the information provided by Mr. Wiruth, Councilman Johnson made a motion to waive the public hearing requirement, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes. Councilman Waller made a motion to issue the home occupation license to Anthony Wiruth at #7 Boulevard Street, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
The council was advised that the City has received the bid recap from Chatham County on the annual contract for gasoline and diesel fuels. The low bidder was Barrett Oil Co. at a price of +$.12/gallon above OPIS for both type fuels. It was noted that Barrett Oil Co. is our current supplier. Councilman Johnson made a motion to accept their bid, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
The following requests/recommendations were received from the Planning & Zoning Commission from their June 21st meeting:
1) The Planning & Zoning Commission recommended the approval of a minor subdivision request submitted on behalf of Edgar Davis for his property located on Pine Barren Road with the stipulation that the subdivision be approved and the plat signed by the Chatham County Health Department. The minor subdivision consists of three lots that meet the City’s required lot sizes and each of the back lots have at least 25’ abutting Pine Barren Road as required by the zoning ordinance. It was noted that the subdivision of the property was originally approved in 1985; however, Mr. Davis failed to have the plat recorded. One of Mr. Davis’s daughters wants to build a home on the back lot and the subdivision has to be recorded before she can obtain her building permit. Council was advised that the Chatham County Health Department has approved the subdivision and signed off on the plat. Councilman Johnson made a motion to approve the three lot minor subdivision as requested by Edgar Davis for his property located on Pine Barren Road, Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
2) Chairman Andrew Rawlings presented a request from commission members that the City Council supply them with an up to date, detailed City zoning map which includes the names and location of all existing streets and zoning districts and that up to date maps be supplied as changes occur to the zoning map. Mayor Rozier advised Chairman Rawlings that the City had been working with RDC on this project for some time, but staff changes at the RDC had delayed the progress on the maps. The clerk stated that she would contact them to set up a meeting to discuss the status of the project and offered to include Chairman Rawlings if he was interested in attending. Chairman Rawlings stated that he would like to attend.
3) The Planning & Zoning Commission members submitted a recommendation that the City Council consider the establishment of a Planned Development Overlay District (PDOD), city limit to city limit, six hundred feet (600’) on both sides of Highway 80 and on both sides of the Jimmy Deloach Parkway to include Phase II of the Jimmy Deloach Parkway and requested a meeting with council to discuss the possible rezoning of both corridors. Attorney Dickey pointed out that until the exact location of Phase II of the Jimmy Deloach Parkway was established; the City would not be able to pursue its rezoning. Attorney Dickey stated that he did not think the City could legally impose a more restrictive zoning district on properties without owners agreeing to this action and asked if the rezoning had been requested by any citizens. Chairman Rawlings advised council that the request had not come from citizens, but from Planning & Zoning Commission members which the ordinance allows. It was noted that before any action could be taken public hearings must be held to receive citizen input on this proposal and the property owners would have to be notified of the hearings. Attorney Dickey also pointed out that the City needed to make sure that this change would comply with the City’s Comprehensive Zoning Plan. Chairman Rawlings stated that he would like to obtain a copy of the plan so the members could review it and was advised that a copy would be furnished to him. After a lengthy discussion, council agreed that before taking any action the City needed to hold a general information hearing which could be advertised through the newspapers and City newsletter and if the property owners supported the commission’s recommendation for the zoning change plans could be made to pursue the rezoning. Former Mayor Billy Strozier asked for an explanation of the recommendation. Mayor Rozier explained that the PDOD was an overlay district that would leave the base zoning the same, but requires the submission of development plans for review and approval by the Planning & Zoning Commission and Council prior to the issuance of building permits.
4) The Planning & Zoning Commission members voted to establish an “Architectural Review Board”. Mayor Rozier advised Chairman Rawlings that according to information received from Attorney Dickey, only the Mayor and City Council could establish “boards”, so the Planning & Zoning Commission needed to revisit this action. The Mayor pointed out that the main problem was the verbiage used by the commission. It was noted, however, that if any changes will be made to the review process or if additional architectural requirements other than those already existing in the City’s Zoning Ordinance are established, an amendment would have to be made to the ordinance to address these items.
The Mayor recognized Kim Robbins and Lisa Patterson who live at #212 Oak Street and had asked to be placed on tonight’s agenda to discuss their concerns about the drainage problems at their residence. Mayor Rozier advised them that the City is in the process of obtaining a Master Drainage Plan to use in its efforts to improve the drainage in Bloomingdale. The plan is being prepared by Thomas & Hutton Engineering Co. and should be completed soon. The Mayor pointed out that he had contacted the engineers yesterday about other drainage problems and had included their residence as one of the problem areas that may need immediate attention.
Council was advised that the City had received a call from Ruth Jones requesting council’s assistance in getting the property owned by Al Bowen at #301 E. Hwy 80 cleared of trash, old cars and weeds. The Mayor asked General Services Supervisor, Fett Burke, to contact the owner and advise him of the complaint and inform him that if the problem is not taken care of in the next two weeks it will be turned over to the Chief of Police for action under the nuisance ordinance.
Mayor Rozier reported that he had received a request from the Hutchinsons and other citizens living on John Carter Road to be placed on tonight’s agenda to discuss the proposed developments in the area. Mr. Archie Burson, who lives at #345 John Carter Road, advised council that many of the residents in this area are interested in being annexed into Bloomingdale to avoid becoming part of the City of Savannah. The Mayor asked Attorney Dickey the steps that would have to be taken to annex their properties. Attorney Dickey stated that the property owners would need to file a formal petition with the Mayor and Council to be annexed into the City. This petition is normally prepared by an attorney with the expense being the responsibility of the property owners and the petition would include the legal descriptions of the properties to be annexed. Attorney Dickey stated that he could prepare the documents or the property owners could get their own attorney. Part of the annexation process would be the establishment of the zoning which requires public notification, public hearings, and approval of the Planning & Zoning Commission and Council. An annexation ordinance must also be approved by council. If the properties are contiguous to the current City limits the City would be able to annex the property under the 100% method with notification to the county of our action on the petitions. Even if the properties are not contiguous the annexations can be done with the permission of the county provided there are no islands created in the process. Mayor Rozier pointed out that the City could presently offer garbage service, police and fire protection, but there were no current plans to provide water and sewer service to the area. Mr. Burson stated that these citizens already had water service and did not need City sewer, so that would not be an issue. Council discussed the requests and the Mayor suggested a meeting be held with the residents in that area to see just who would be interested in coming in to the City so we can determine which method of annexation the property owners needed to pursue.
Council was advised that the DOT has sent a letter to the City requesting the submission of a priority list of the City’s anticipated resurfacing needs to be funded under the LARP program. General Maintenance Supervisor, Fett Burke, has reviewed the condition of various City streets and has suggested we submit our priorities as follows: 1) Cregor Street—Chestnut to Westhaven—3150’; 2) Maple Street—Highway 80 to end—3075’ with a 300’ skip in the road between Main and Cregor Streets; and 3) Pine Barren Road—Bloomingdale Road to Pooler City limits at the 90° curve—8976’. After a brief discussion, Councilman Johnson made a motion to submit this list of streets to the DOT for resurfacing under the LARP program. Councilman Wedincamp seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier reminded council that prior to the adoption of the FY 2005-2006 budget a public hearing needs to be scheduled for citizen input. The resolution adopted by the council at the June 16th meeting requires that the budget be adopted within 60 days of the first day of the new fiscal year, so it must be adopted by August 29th. Copies of the draft budget prepared from discussions at the workshop held on June 23, 2005 have been distributed to council. Councilman Ray expressed his concern about adopting the budget without making an attempt to reduce, as much as possible, the use of funds on hand to balance the budget. Council agreed to hold one more workshop to look at the budget prior to scheduling a public hearing and the date was set for Thursday, August 4, 2005 at 7:00pm at City Hall.
The Mayor reported that this concluded the items presented by the agenda deadline of Friday, July 15, 2005.
Councilman Wedincamp reported that he would like to see the Planning & Zoning Commission’s recommendation regarding the establishment of the Planned Development Overlay District pursued by council.
Councilman Waller stated that he did not have anything to report from the Police Committee. The Mayor recognized Charles Rogers who reported that work on the police department building was on schedule with the roof work now completed and the brickwork underway. Mr. Rogers stated that the sheetrock would be delivered tomorrow and once its installation is completed the painting work can begin and the doors hung. Council was advised that bids were out on the flooring work for the building.
Councilman Ray mentioned the budget workshop will be held on August 4th at 7:00pm. Mayor Rozier stated that he did not have anything from the personnel committee.
Councilman Johnson reported that Buddy had advised him that there seems to be some kind of blockage in the City’s drainage system because the Hardin Canal was full to overflowing and the Pipemaker’s Canal is almost dry. Councilman Johnson commented that it appeared to be a beaver dam problem. The Mayor asked if the road construction could be causing part of the problem, but Buddy pointed out that the backups were in a different location. Councilman Johnson stated he would get with the maintenance department and look into what may be causing the problem. Councilman Johnson stated that there had been some complaints made about the poor condition of Stagecoach Road, but when he and Buddy checked the road there does not seem to be any major problems except that those related to the steady use of the roadway by the truckers hauling dirt.
Councilman Myrick stated that Recreation Director Joe Young wanted to make an announcement related to an upcoming fund raiser for the Bloomingdale Recreation Department. Mr. Young stated that the department will be hosting a golf tournament on July 30th at the Lost Plantation to raise money for the recreation program. The cost will be $50 per person and individual hole sponsorships will be available. Mr. Young encouraged everyone to participate in the tournament. Council was also advised that football and cheerleader signups are underway.
The accounts payable were reviewed. Councilman Ray made a motion to pay the bills, Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Being no further business, Councilman Waller made a motion to adjourn, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes. The meeting adjourned at 7:45pm.
Mayor Rozier and Council members Johnson, Myrick, Ray, Waller and Wedincamp were present at the meeting.