December 19, 2002
The meeting was called to order by Mayor Rozier with Councilman Waller leading in prayer.
The minutes of the December 5th meeting were reviewed. Councilman Tyler made a motion to approve said minutes, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier advised the City Council and citizens that a plaque had been presented to Bloomingdale by GMA acknowledging the City’s efforts to become a “City of Ethics”. The Mayor stated that the plaque would be displayed at the City Hall.
Councilman Tyler reported that the well permit applications will be submitted to the state on behalf of the City of Bloomingdale by Thomas & Hutton Engineering, Inc. Councilman Tyler stated that there had been a delay in submitting the applications in hopes of having these done by the Georgia Rural Water Association, but he was advised that it would be better to have them prepared by the engineers.
Councilman Tyler stated he would provide a report to council at the next meeting regarding a cost estimate to run the water line to Pooler.
Councilman Tyler advised council that he had a meeting set up with Carter & Sloope for Friday morning, December 20th to look at sewer treatment plants in South Carolina and invited any council members wanting to attend to join him.
The Mayor reported that he and Councilman Tyler had met with representatives from Carter & Sloope the first of the week and they had given them some updated information regarding Miocene test wells. Mayor Rozier asked if council wanted to vote to amend the agenda to allow for discussion of their proposal or wait until after the first of the year to see if we were able to get an increase in our well permit. Councilman Waller made a motion to postpone further discussion on this matter until after the first of the year when we should receive information on whether or not we would be granted approval of our well permit application(s). Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier stated that during the meeting held with Pooler and the Morgans to discuss the Wildcat Dam Road Bridge, Mayor Carter stated that Pooler would be willing to help with the costs related to fixing the bridge. The Mayor reported that a discussion had been held regarding the use of a railroad flat car for the bridge and the Morgans were in the process of finding one. The approximate cost of the flat car would be $5,000 and reports are that this type structure would be better than repairing the existing bridge. Mayor Rozier pointed out that the Department of Transportation would have to approve the construction of the bridge using the flat car.
Attorney Gerard reported that he had reviewed the Planned Development Overlay District Ordinance (PDOD) and stated that the Planning & Licensing Committee may want to review it before presenting the ordinance to council for adoption. Del Ferguson asked why it would have to go back to the Planning & Zoning Commission and was advised that Attorney Gerard was referring to the council committee (Planning & Licensing) reviewing the ordinance, not the Planning & Zoning Commission. Copies of Attorney Gerard’s comments have been distributed to council for their review. Attorney Gerard pointed out that this ordinance would allow for some controls in the development of transitional areas without interfering with the use of adjoining properties having a more restrictive zoning classification. Mayor Rozier stated that this ordinance would help control development in the City and he would like to see it approved. Citizen James Arnold asked if he would have to come to council to sell his property and was advised that if his property is changed to this zoning the council would have to approve the development of the property, but not the actual sale. Councilman Myrick stated that he wanted to review Attorney Gerard’s comments before taking any action on the ordinance and felt sure that Councilman Johnson, the Chairman of the Planning & Licensing Committee, who was not present at tonight’s meeting, would feel the same. Councilman Myrick made a motion to postpone action on the ordinance until the Planning & Licensing Committee has reviewed the ordinance and presented their recommendations regarding its adoption. Councilman Tyler seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier advised council that he had not been able to make contact with representatives from Republic Waste Services, Inc. about scheduling a public meeting for citizens to obtain information on the garbage service, but he would try to get with them in the next few days and will advise council of the date.
Council briefly discussed the mutual aid agreement from the City of Savannah. Attorney Gerard has reviewed the agreement and copies of his comments and suggested changes have been distributed to council. Mayor Rozier advised council that the City has received a request from the City of Savannah Fire Chief Paul Taylor to execute this agreement by January 17, 2003. Attorney Gerard pointed out that his changes had been sent to the City of Savannah’s attorney, James B. Blackburn, for consideration and these changes needed to be addressed before council approved the agreement. Councilman Tyler made a motion to pass action on the agreement until the January 16, 2003 meeting. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Council was advised a meeting had been scheduled for December 20, 2002 at 9:00am with MDS, police department representatives and the auditor to discuss information needed by the auditor for accounting purposes.
The council was informed that a meeting has been scheduled for Thursday, January 9, 2003 at 8:00am with representatives from GMA to review with employees the three health plan options that will be offered to employees effective March 1, 2003. The council was also advised that the City is in the process of obtaining price quotes from other insurance agencies regarding health, life & disability insurance for its employees.
Mayor Rozier presented a request from Joe Hubbard at #34 Hiram Road to construct a 24’ x 34’ two story building for use as storage space, a game room and a two-car garage. The downstairs consists of 816 sq.ft. with space for two cars and a game room with a full kitchen. The upstairs (816 sq.ft.) will be unfinished at this time and used as storage space. Since council must approve permits of buildings with enclosed space of over 500 sq.ft. this matter was placed on tonight’s agenda. It was noted that since the building will consist of over 1600 sq.ft. and contains a kitchen, council may need to require Mr. Hubbard to sign an agreement addressing the restrictions on the use of the building. The restrictions would include not using the building for a dwelling or for overnight guests. Mr. Hubbard stated that he did not plan on using the building for a dwelling, but there may be a possibility that he would use it for overnight guests so he did not want to sign this type agreement. Mr. Hubbard asked if he could obtain a permit for an addition to his current residence if he removed the kitchen. Council agreed that if he did not install another kitchen and attached this addition onto the current dwelling, he would not be faced with these same restrictions since it would then be part of the existing residence. Mr. Hubbard stated he would withdraw his current request and provide another set of plans requesting a permit for an addition to his existing residence.
Council reviewed a request from the Recreation Executive Board to add Melanie Burke as a member. After a brief discussion, Councilman Tyler made a motion to approve her appointment. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Council was advised that the current general consulting agreement with Bill Saxman has expired and they needed to consider renewing said agreement for another six-month period at a rate of $85.00 per hour. Councilman Waller made a motion to approve the renewal of the agreement, Councilman Tyler seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Council discussed a request for Mayor Rozier to execute documents accepting the Final Action Plan for the Permit Modifications to the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System 2001-2002 Annual Report for Chatham County and Co-applicants. Councilman Ray made a motion to authorize the Mayor to execute said documents. Councilman Tyler seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Council reviewed information regarding the construction of an addition/storage space to an existing mobile home at #330 Wallace Circle owned by Kim Hickox without a building permit. Council was advised that there are two mobile homes on the property that existed when the property was annexed. However, the addition to the mobile home would be in conflict with the zoning ordinance because it would be enlarging a non-conforming building—the second mobile home. The council was informed that the property would need to be subdivided to allow a building permit to be issued for the addition. Mayor Rozier stated that as Chairman of the Planning & Licensing Committee, Councilman Johnson has asked that the council initiate an official “Stop-Work” order on this construction effective immediately. This “Stop-Work” order would prohibit any more work to be done on the project until his committee, along with the building inspector, meets with the property owner to discuss this situation and inspect the work that has already been done. After the review, the committee will make their recommendations to council regarding the violation of the City’s Building and Fire Code Ordinance at the January 16, 2003 meeting. Mr. Kirk Sukkel, on behalf of Kim Hickox, addressed council and advised them that although he did not obtain a building permit before starting the project he had taken pictures of the work as it progressed. He further stated that he had a crew of workers that he was going to have to lay-off and wanted to go ahead and start the building project while he had the help available. Mr. Sukkel explained that he was going to attach the storage space to the existing mobile home. Councilman Wedincamp questioned him about the size of the lot and was advised that it was approximately 75,000± sq.ft. It was noted that there was probably enough property to subdivide the lots, however, since the mobile homes are served by septic tanks, the Chatham County Health Department would determine the lot size requirements based on the type soil on the property. Mr. Sukkel also stated that there was someone living in both mobile homes. Councilman Ray made a motion to issue the “Stop-Work” order on this construction until the Planning & Licensing Committee could review the situation and make a recommendation to council on the violations. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Council was advised that the Planning & Zoning Commission has recommended a couple more changes to the fence ordinance. These changes will be submitted to Attorney Gerard for inclusion in the fence ordinance and the ordinance will be presented to council for consideration at the January 16, 2003 meeting.
Council reviewed the uniform allowance information that was requested by Mayor Rozier at the last council meeting. The Mayor stated that he would like to see council approve the City paying the full cost of the rental/cleaning of uniforms for the maintenance department which would total approximately $3.50 per week for nine maintenance department workers. Councilman Myrick questioned whether or not council should make this decision without first having the personnel committee review the request and make their recommendation. Since Mayor Rozier serves as Chairman of the Personnel Committee, he asked Council members Ray and Waller if they had any objections to this change. Since there was no objections from these members, Councilman Wedincamp made a motion that the City assume the full cost for the rental/cleaning of the approved uniforms for the maintenance department workers. Councilman Tyler seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes. Council agreed on an effective date of January 1, 2003.
Councilman Tyler expressed his concern that the council has not yet developed the operating guidelines for its police department as recommended by the consulting firm that evaluated the department several months ago. Councilman Tyler pointed out that the selection process for a police chief should not really begin until this has been done because the City is not able to let a chief know what is expected of him or the police department. Councilman Tyler stated that even the acting chief needs some direction from the council. Mayor Rozier advised council that he has been talking with Pooler Police Chief Chan about the possibility of the police chiefs from other departments evaluating our applicants to help the City determine who was best qualified for the position. Councilman Tyler stated that he had no objections to this process; he did not feel we were at this point yet. The Mayor asked if he had any suggestions as to when the council should get together to start the process of developing some guidelines. Councilman Tyler stated that he did not have a specific date in mind, but knew it would be difficult to get together until after the first of the year. Mayor Rozier advised council this matter would be placed on the January 16, 2003 agenda to set up some work session dates.
Council reviewed the accounts payable. Councilman Myrick asked that council approve the accounts payable with an additional invoice from Precision Systems for $24,937.50. This covered the cost for the seven (7) video cameras approved for purchase by council. Councilman Ray made a motion to approve payment of the accounts payable with the addition of the bill from Precision Systems. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Being no further business, Councilman Waller made a motion to adjourn. Councilman Tyler seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes. The meeting adjourned at 7:35pm.