July 17, 2003
The meeting was called to order by Mayor Rozier with Councilman Myrick leading in prayer. The minutes of the June 19, 2003 council meeting and called meeting of June 25, 2003 were reviewed. Councilman Waller made a motion to approve said minutes, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier reminded council that at the last meeting the Inmate Service Fee Agreement had been passed on to the Public Safety Committee and Roy Pike to review and to bring back a recommendation on its approval to council at this meeting. However, since Chief Gossett has not had an opportunity to review the document, Councilman Myrick has asked that a recommendation on the Inmate Service Fee Agreement be delayed until the August meeting and council agreed with this request. Council was advised that Attorney Gerard is checking with the City of Savannah, who has already executed the agreement, to see how they have reconciled their jail bills to make sure they comply with the agreement.
The Mayor asked Ernest Grizzard for an update on the Bloomingdale Pump Station Rehabilitation since Councilman Tyler was not present at tonight’s meeting to provide this information. Ernest Grizzard reported that the new pump station has been installed for about a week and has been operating without any problems. He also reported that AquaSouth was now working on the by-pass station. Mayor Rozier stated that the City has received a recommendation from Thomas & Hutton Engineering Co. to pay AquaSouth Construction, Inc. a draw of $42,455 on the work performed as of June 27, 2003. The Mayor advised council that council needs to approve payment of this invoice from the general fund until a certificate of deposit matures and the funds can be transferred from the water/sewer fund. After a brief discussion, Councilman Ray made a motion to pay the $42,455 draw for the Bloomingdale Pump Station Rehabilitation work to AquaSouth Construction, Inc. from the general fund until the monies could be transferred from the water/sewer fund. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
The Mayor reported that at council’s request, Attorney Gerard had notified R. Jonathan Hart, Chatham County’s Attorney, of the City’s concerns about the practicability of spending even the $38,000 to repair the Wildcat Dam Road Bridge when the county’s plan is to replace it as part of the Hardin Canal Drainage Improvements Project. Mayor Rozier ask Attorney Gerard if he had received a response from the county, but was advised that the Attorney had no yet heard from them.
Council was advised that Steven Sheer, City of Pooler’s Attorney, had informed Attorney Gerard that Pooler has agreed to delete the paragraph in the proposed Third Amendment to the Pooler/Bloomingdale Waste Water Treatment Facility Agreement obligating Bloomingdale to provide additional land for our effluent at no cost to Pooler since this issue could be resolved under the terms of the original agreement should the acquisition of land become necessary in the future. It was noted, however, that the City has not yet received the amended document.
The Mayor stated that he had not yet had an opportunity to discuss with the owners the City’s requirements regarding the acceptance of Perry Road as a public street. Note: At the June 19th meeting, council agreed that the owners needed to provide documentation from an engineering firm that the roadway drains properly and steps would need to be taken to make sure it meets the City’s current roadway requirements before the City could accept the road as a City Street.
Attorney Gerard reported that he has received the executed quitclaim deed from the Oetgens for their property on Stagecoach Road, but he is still waiting for this information from Mr. Meyers.
Mayor Rozier advised council that since Councilman Tyler was not here, he would table any discussion regarding the bids from the three engineering firms for consulting services for the Comprehensive Storm Water Management Plan, but noted that Attorney Gerard has reviewed the bids and is available to discuss them with the committee when a meeting has been scheduled.
The council was notified that Attorney Gerard has made the requested modifications to the substance abuse policy and copies have been distributed to all employees for the required review. The plan is scheduled for implementation on October 1, 2003.
The Mayor reported that Attorney Gerard had notified David Hicks on May 23, 2003 that he had sixty (60) days to remove the mobile home located at #1301 A. East Hwy 80 due to its nonconformity with City zoning; however, there is no evidence that he is taking steps to do so. With the sixty (60) day deadline approaching, council needs to decide how they want to handle this matter. Attorney Gerard stated that once the deadline has passed, Mr. Hicks could be subpoenaed to appear before Judge Edenfield for violation of the zoning ordinance. Council discussed the matter and agreed to delay a decision until the August council meeting when the deadline will have passed and this will also give Mr. Hicks another four or five weeks to comply with the council’s directive.
Councilman Wedincamp advised council that he had not yet met with Wayne Dotti to look into the drainage problems in the area surrounding his residence located at #503 Oak Street, but he would try to get with him before the August meeting.
Council was informed that Attorney Gerard had notified the county of the City’s findings that the Osteen Road Bridge is not located within the City limits.
Mayor Rozier reported that the second reading of the annexation ordinance for property owned by Ferman & Ginger Tyler on Osteen Road needed to be approved by council. Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the second reading, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes. The council was advised that this matter will need to be referred to the Planning Commission to process a rezoning of the property to a classification that matches the County’s present zoning for the property. Council agreed that they did not want to go through the public hearing and the advertising expense until after Chatham County has addressed the approval of the City’s annexation of the property. Councilman Myrick made a motion to delay the referral of the rezoning to Planning Commission until after the County’s decision. Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council was advised that Attorney Gerard has reviewed the existing Uniform Rental Service Agreement with CINTAS and confirmed that our Agreement was for a one-year renewable term, not 36 months. Since the contract would be in violation of #36-60-13 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated if it does not have an automatic renewable one-year calendar term, he has made the appropriate changes to the proposed Agreement. The Agreement would remain in effect until December 31, 2003 at which time it will automatically renew itself for consecutive one-year terms unless the Company is notified, in writing, sixty (60) days in advance. On January 1, 2005, the Company will automatically increase the prices then in effect by the amount of the increase in the Consumer Price Index for the previous twelve months or five (5%) percent. Attorney Gerard has also deleted the indemnification paragraph in the proposed Agreement. Council was advised that if the General Services Committee is in agreement with the rates provided, the proposed Agreement can be approved as amended with the stipulation that the signers of said Agreement initial the changes. After a brief discussion and Ernest Grizzard’s assurance that CINTAS has agreed to these changes, Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the proposed Agreement with the above-mentioned stipulations. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier pointed out that the 1995 Ford Garbage Truck has been under lease with Waste Systems of Savannah since June 24th and the maintenance department has voiced some concerns about the current condition of the vehicle. Ernest Grizzard reported that the garbage truck has only been returned to the shop one time for an inspection and it was a quart low on oil and needed to be greased. Council discussed this issue and considered amending the agreement to require the lessee return the truck on a weekly basis for the City to provide maintenance at the lessee’s expense. Council was advised that the truck was scheduled to be returned tomorrow for another inspection and these problems could be discussed with the lessee at that time. Council also discussed the option of not continuing the lease, but agreed that if the maintenance problem could be resolved; this was a good income for the City since the truck is not currently being used. Ernest Grizzard stated that he knew the lessee, Barry Anderson, was interested in purchasing the truck, but was advised that before the truck could be sold to anyone it must be declared as surplus and go through the bidding process. Some council members expressed their concern about selling the vehicle at this time. Councilman Wedincamp stated that he would be willing to meet with Mr. Anderson when he brought the truck in tomorrow to discuss the maintenance problems with him and council agreed to delay any action on this issue until Councilman Wedincamp could talk with Mr. Anderson.
Council was advised the City has received a request from James W. Winn for a home occupation license to operate the “office only” of a pressure cleaning business from his residence located at #308 Miller Street. The business will consist of washing houses, brick, siding, driveways and sidewalks and Mr. Winn will be the only employee. Mr. Winn states there will be no outside traffic related to the business coming to the residence. Councilman Wedincamp asked if he would be bringing anything to his residence to pressure clean and was assured by Mr. Winn that he would not. Council was advised that they have the option to waive the public hearing and Councilman Wedincamp made a motion to waive said hearing. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes. Councilman Wedincamp then made a motion to issue the home occupation license for the “office only” of a pressure cleaning business, Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council reviewed a request from Walter Sills to obtain a permit to construct a 30’x 50’ metal building on his property located at #14 Boatright Estates. Mr. Sills indicates the building will only be used for storage and to work on cars that he races at the Oglethorpe Speedway as a hobby. Council was advised that the building does not include any bathroom facilities. It was noted that since the building consists of more than 500 sq. ft. of enclosed space, council must approve issuance of the permit. Councilman Myrick asked if he anticipated any problems with the neighbors about his working on race cars. Mr. Sills advised him that he had already been doing some of the work in his yard and under a carport, but had not had any complaints. Mr. Sills also noted that his neighbor has a similar hobby, so he did not anticipate any problems. Councilman Myrick made a motion to issue the building permit to Mr. Sills as requested for the use stated above and Councilman Ray seconded the motion. The motion passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier reported that the City had received a request from Titan Transport for permission to operate their trucking company from #506 W. Hwy 80. The property is owned by Linda Hamrick and is zoned C-2. Owners of the trucking company wanted to make sure they could use the property for their business before purchasing it. The Titan Trucking Co. pulls containers, vans and flat beds all over the southeast. The house on the property would serve as an office and the trucking yard would be behind the house. The owners plan to clear the property a little at a time and intend to add rock and dirt until the whole trucking yard is done. They also plan to build a two bay 40’ x 50’ shop for minor diesel and tire repairs. Council was advised that the City’s zoning ordinance does not specifically address a trucking company in its List of Permissible and Conditional Uses. The trucking company’s representative, John E. Crosby, was present at the meeting and Councilman Wedincamp asked him how many trucks the company currently ran. Mr. Crosby stated that there are two city trucks and thirteen over-the-road, but he hoped to increase the number to a total of 20. Mr. Crosby indicated that he would be willing to make whatever adjustments to the driveway that may be needed based on the plans for the Jimmy Deloach Parkway. Council advised him that there had been numerous changes to the plans for the extension of Jimmy Deloach Parkway, so the City would not really know how to advise him on the driveway issue. Council discussed the request and agreed that since the City’s zoning ordinance does not specifically address a trucking company in its list of uses, the matter should be referred to the Planning & Zoning Commission to determine in which zone this type business should be permitted. Councilman Myrick made the motion to refer the matter to Planning & Zoning, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council was advised the City had received a request from Grayling Singleton to subdivide a five (5) acre tract located at #1203 East Main Street into five (5) equal parts. Council was reminded that although this section of Main Street was dedicated as part of the public street system in August, 1998, the resolution that was adopted by council indicates that the City would take whatever action was necessary to lay out, grade, construct and maintain a sufficient street over the entire property, with all necessary drainage, as soon as public funds were available—since there have been no funds available, the work has not been done. Prior to the use of this section of the roadway as a public right of way, these improvements would need to be addressed. Therefore, since the approval of the subdivision of property abutting this roadway would depend on its being a public right of way that met requirements for a City street, the subdivision could not be approved. Also, council was advised that if steps were taken in the future by the City to improve the road, a subdivision of this property into five tracts would require that it meet the guidelines of a major subdivision such as drainage, water/sewer issues, etc. After a discussion regarding this matter, council agreed that Attorney Gerard should notify Mr. Singleton, in writing, that the subdivision could not be approved using Main Street as the public access road.
City council was informed that since questions had been raised about the condition of the City’s Christmas lights, the clerk contacted December Lights, the manufacturer of the decorations, who has agreed to restring them with bulb lighting at a cost of $100 each (the City has 18 decorations), plus shipping. Council was advised that the City could save shipping costs if they can get someone to take the decorations to the manufacturer and pick them up when completed—the company is located in Dawsonville. If the lights were delivered in the next few weeks, we should be able to get them back before the end of September or the first of October. Council was also advised that the cost to restring the lights and the shipping fees could be included in the budget currently being prepared. After a brief discussion, council agreed that the City should make this change in the decorations and several council members volunteered to take these decorations to Dawsonville. Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the cost to restring the decorations with bulb lighting at a cost of $100 each as well as the mileage expense for someone to take the decorations to Dawsonville and to include these expenses in the 2003/2004 budget. Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council was advised that Councilman Tyler had met with the owners of property at #103 Cypress Street regarding a grinder pump problem and since they still had questions regarding the matter he had directed them to council. Richard Kyall, and his son, Rick, advised council that they owned a duplex apartment at this location and had been experiencing problems with the fall from the house to the grinder pump at apartment “B” for some time. Mr. Kyall explained that they had taken steps to raise the pipe from the house as instructed by City crews, but there were still problems and felt that the grinder pump tank had floated up several inches since it was originally installed. Mr. Kyall pointed out that he had been advised by City employees that the grinder pump tanks were attached to concrete slabs when installed, but he had dug down to the bottom of the tank and had not seen any concrete. Mr. Kyall stated that one employee had advised him they used gravel, not concrete. Ernest Grizzard advised council that he could guarantee that the tanks installed during the original construction phase were all attached to concrete slabs. Mr. Kyall explained that he had taken measurements from the house to the tank and it appeared that there was a problem with the height of the grinder pump and felt the City should lower the tank about 5”. Mr. Kyall stated that he had been advised that the cost to lower the tank would run $500, but he did not feel this should be his responsibility if there was a problem with its original installation. Council discussed the matter at length and Councilman Wedincamp volunteer to meet with Mr. Kyall tomorrow and advised council of his findings at the next meeting.
Mayor Rozier stated that the City has received a request from the Department of Administrative Services to approve an update to paperwork appointing certifying officials and property selectors for the acquisition and utilization of Surplus Property acquired through the Georgia State Agency for Support Services Division. He noted that in the past, the Mayor, the Mayor Pro-tem and the City Clerk have been designated as certifying officials, with the Mayor, Mayor Pro-tem, council members and department heads being designated as property selectors. After a brief discussion, Councilman Waller made a motion to approve the same appointments, Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
The council was advised the Coastal Georgia Regional Development Center was requesting that the City of Bloomingdale appoint a representative to the Historic Preservation Advisory Council. The appointee should be a well-acquainted member of your community and have knowledge in some of the following areas: national register nomination, historic tax incentives, streetscape and urban design, historical research and surveys or preservation planning. The Advisory Council meets approximately four times a year and the nomination is for a three year term. If the City is not interested in having a representative on the advisory council, the CGRDC would like to know that as well. Since no one knew of anyone that would be interested in serving, the Mayor suggested the matter be tabled until the August meeting before making a decision on the matter.
Mayor Rozier informed council that he has received a request from Alan Silver, who is working with Southside Fire/EMS and partnering police/fire/EMS providers in Chatham County to secure grant funding for a shared mobile data system, to provide a letter of support from Bloomingdale to include with the application to GEMA for the funding of said unit through a Phase II Homeland Security grant. The Mayor pointed out that although he felt the City could support this effort, he wanted to make sure that our letter did not commit the City to proving any funds for its purchase. The Mayor asked Chief Gossett to see if he could find out whether or not this would be the case and let him know. Mayor Rozier suggested that council give him the authority to submit a letter of support provided it did not include providing financial support from the City. Councilman Myrick made a motion authorizing the Mayor to submit the letter with the stipulations noted. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council was advised that the Planning & Zoning Commission has recommended that the Comprehensive Plan Short Term Work Program be reviewed by council for approval. Note: Draft copies of the plan were submitted to council members on Monday, July 14th. Mayor Rozier recognized Bill Saxman, the City’s consultant on the preparation of this plan, who reported that the final report must be approved by October 31, 2003; however, the State DCA requires that the plan be approved within 60 days of the first resolution adopted by Council. Mr. Saxman stated that if council would like to have more time to review the draft before approving it to be forwarded to the RDC; he suggests that he be allowed to send a preliminary draft to the RDC planner for her initial review before the official copy is approved by the City in August.
Councilman Wedincamp made a motion to authorize Bill Saxman to submit a draft of the plan to the RDC planner, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier stated that council needed to decide what action they wanted to take regarding the demolition of the house at #1711 E. Hwy 80 without a permit and without making arrangements to protect the grinder pump tank. This house was destroyed by fire on April 25th and unless it has been sold it is owned by the Counts family. Apparently, the house was bulldozed down last weekend and Ernest Grizzard checked the property on Monday and it appears that the grinder pump is under the rubble. The Mayor pointed out that he did not think that Ms. Counts would have deliberately damaged the grinder pump tank, but did feel she should be notified that if that was the case that she would be responsible for the cost of its replacement. Councilman Myrick made a motion that she be notified of her responsibility regarding the grinder pump tank, Councilman Wedincamp seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Council was reminded there will be another budget work session held on Monday, July 21st at 6:30pm at the City Hall.
The Mayor presented the accounts payable for consideration. Councilman Waller made a motion to approve payment of the bills, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier announced that he had made changes in two committees. Councilman Mike Wedincamp will be the Chairman of the Planning & Zoning Committee instead of the General Services Committee and Councilman Karl Johnson will Chair the General Services Committee rather than the Planning & Zoning Committee.
Council was advised that the following matter had not been placed on tonight’s agenda by last Friday’s deadline because this problem was just brought to the City’s attention this week. Councilman Johnson has asked that it be added to tonight’s agenda because it involves a shared driveway issue that must be resolved before the next meeting. The driveway is located between #306 and #308 Maple Street. Councilman Ray made a motion to add this matter to the agenda for discussion. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes. Since Councilman Johnson was sick and not able to attend tonight’s meeting, Ernest Grizzard outlined the problem with the driveway for council. Council was advised that there was currently one driveway being used to access two different lots. These lots had previously been owned by one individual, but several years ago the property was sold to two different people. There had previously been a residence located on #306 Maple, but it burned down years ago. A building permit application for #306 Maple Street has recently been submitted to the City Hall. The lot at #308 is vacant, but the owner uses the driveway in question to access the back of her residence that faces Cypress Street. The owner of #308 Maple Street is refusing the contractor, James Williams, the use of the driveway to access #306 Maple Street for construction of the new residence. Council was advised that the building permit process requires that if a driveway is needed for access to a lot, the cost of the driveway must be paid for at the time the permit is obtained. In this case, there is an existing driveway; however, there is a question about who actually has the rights to its use. Ernest Grizzard stated that according to the property line markers at least 2/3rds of the driveway fronts #306 Maple Street. Attorney Gerard pointed out that without checking the title, it would be very difficult to determine who owns what, but felt that this would probably be a civil matter anyway. Ernest Grizzard stated that the contractor wanted to install his own driveway and was willing to pay for it along with his building permit, but it must be located at least five foot from the property line and the City would have to remove the existing driveway to make the new installation. Questions were raised about whether or not the City could remove the entire driveway without compensating the owner at #308 Maple Street. Attorney Gerard stated his concerns about taking this kind of action without first notifying the owner. Council discussed the matter at length. Since the contractor was ready to start construction and was willing to pay for the installation of his own driveway, council agreed that the City could issue the building permit without his paying for the driveway until this matter could be resolved. Councilman Ray made a motion to issue the building permit to James Williams for a residence at #306 Maple Street. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes. Attorney Gerard stated he would check the titles and hopefully there would be a plat of record to help resolve the driveway issue.
The Mayor stated that with Representative Ron Stephens’s help he was meeting with Governor Sonny Perdue on August 12th at 2:00pm to discuss Bloomingdale’s water problems and invited anyone else interested in going to attend the meeting. Several council members stated they would like to attend the meeting.
Being no further business, Councilman Waller made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 8:15pm. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
The Mayor and Council members Myrick, Ray, Wedincamp and Waller attended the meeting.