Official minutes of the December 3, 2009 Council Meeting
approved by City Council on January 7, 2010
The meeting was called to order by Mayor Tipton with the Reverend Darrell Bailey leading in prayer. Councilwoman Winn made a motion to approve the draft copy of the minutes of the November 19, 2009 council meeting with no changes. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the agenda for the December 3, 2009 meeting with no changes. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Councilman Strozier stated that the City of Bloomingdale had been recognizing an “Outstanding Citizen of the Year” at the Patriotic Celebration for several years, but since that event was not held this year, the award would be presented tonight. Councilman Strozier announced the recipient of the 2009 Outstanding Citizen of the Year was the Reverend Darrell Bailey. He informed everyone that Reverend Bailey has served as the Chaplin of the Bloomingdale Police Department for several years. Councilman Strozier also stated that Reverend Bailey was instrumental in helping to distribute funds generated by a barbeque benefit held by the City to families affected by the terrorist attacks in New York City on September 11, 2001. Reverend Bailey expressed his appreciation to the Mayor and City Council for the award. Mayor Tipton noted that Reverend Bailey was very involved in the Community Benevolence program that provided assistance to local citizens as well as travelers in times of need.
During administrative and committee reports Councilman Strozier reported that the bio-system purchased by the City to help eliminate the odor at the lift station would be delivered next Wednesday. He pointed out that the manufacturer had indicated it would take about 7 or 8 days before the system would be fully operational.
Mayor Tipton recognized Paul Scott, the agent for property owned by Ron Walker, who presented information to council regarding the rezoning of a 47-acre tract on Hwy 80 from C-1/R-A to C-1/C-2. It was noted that the Planning Commission had presented their recommendation for approval of the request with stipulations at the November 19, 2009 meeting, but, at the request of the developer, council action had been postponed until tonight. Mr. Scott advised council that the property would be developed as a business park with restrictions on the type businesses that would be allowed. Some of those not allowed are bars, electric power yards, bulk gas storage, fish/meat wholesale businesses, taxidermist, fuel oil storage, and laundry plants. Mr. Scott noted that another stipulation agreed to by the developer was to limit the size of the buildings to a maximum of 10,000 sq. ft. per acre up to a 3 acre tract with a maximum of 35,000 sq. ft of buildings on tracts over 3 acres. Councilwoman Winn stated that the design was to include a means of access in the front and back of the property to the adjoining property to the east to provide connectivity for future development. Citizen Dennis Baxter pointed out that stipulations for approval of the rezoning should include the installation of a traffic light in the future, at the developer’s expense, should traffic warrant the device. Mr. Baxter also commented that the site plan should include a higher berm with vegetation for the residential property to the west and questioned why there was no buffer shown to the east of the development since that property was also zoned residential. Mr. Scott stated that the developer felt that since the property to the east was not yet developed, that any buffer between that property and their development should be at the expense of future developers. Mr. Scott also pointed out that the Department of Transportation would make the determination as to if and when a traffic light would be needed, but they had no objections to bearing this expense. Citizen Jerry Crosby asked if the development would have overhead or underground electrical service. Mr. Scott stated he did not know at this time, but felt sure the preference would be for underground power. Citizen William McCarty questioned whether the City had enough water and/or sewer capacity. Mayor Tipton stated that the developer indicated their need would be approximately 28,000 gpd and there was sufficient capacity at this time to serve the development. Citizen Barbara Griffin stated that at the public hearing there had been a question raised about one resident not being notified of the hearing and asked if that had been cleared up. Mayor Tipton advised her that the notice had been sent to the owner of the property as required. After this discussion, Councilwoman Winn made a motion to accept the recommendation from the Planning Commission to rezone the 47-acre tract on Highway 80 as requested with the following stipulations: 1) The construction of a berm with vegetation on the west side of the property with the size and height to be included on the site plans; 2) To provide access at the front and back of the property on the east side of the tract for connectivity to adjoining properties so vehicles will not have to get back on Highway 80 to travel between properties; 3) To provide for a traffic light on Highway 80 at the developers expense as the need is determined by the DOT; and 4) Enter into a water/sewer infrastructure agreement with the City of Bloomingdale. Councilman Strozier seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. Attorney Dickey pointed out that stipulation #’s 1-3 could be included in the water/sewer infrastructure agreement.
Mayor Tipton presented to council the bid that had been received on the surplus compressor. The bid had been received from William Taylor in the amount of $310.00. Councilman Myrick made a motion to sell the generator to Mr. Taylor for $310.00, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes. Councilman Strozier abstained from voting.
Council discussed the setting of the Occupational License fees for 2010. It was noted that the base rate for Occupational Licenses was increased in 2008 from $25 to $50 with plans to increase the base rate by $25 per year in 2009 and 2010; however, council did not increase the base rate in 2009. Council also discussed whether new businesses purchasing occupational licenses in December, 2009 could be issued 2010 licenses. After a brief discussion in which council agreed that any changes in the current rates should be initiated by the new council, Councilman Myrick made a motion to set the 2010 Occupational License fees the same as those charged in 2009. Councilman Myrick’s motion also included allowing those new business purchasing occupational licenses in December, 2009 to be issued 2010 licenses provided they signed a memorandum agreeing to pay any increase in the fees that may be imposed by the new council for 2010 Occupational License fees and existing businesses purchasing their 2010 licenses in December, 2009 be required to sign the same memorandum. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton stated that Attorney Dickey had some information regarding the SAVE program to present to council. Attorney Dickey explained that the council needed to approve a Memorandum of Agreement with SAVE (federal Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program) to comply with State Law O.C.G.A. § 50-36-1. The program requires cities to verify that applicants for certain “public benefits” are legally present in the United States. The public benefits include, but may not be limited to, the issuance of occupational tax certificates, alcoholic beverage licenses, taxicab licenses as well as contracts authorized by City Charter. In addition, any individual receiving benefits from the City such as retirement, health or disability, must also provide verification of their citizenship. This relatively new Georgia law requires that the cities must have anyone applying for or eligible for the public benefits as stated, complete a status application. If a non-citizen receives or applies for a City public benefit, they must provide their Alien Registration number on the application and the City must report this information to SAVE. Citizen Mike Hargrove asked if there would be a cost to the City to participate in the program. Attorney Dickey stated that participation was mandatory, however, the only expense would be the additional time it would take to have the forms completed for current officials and employees and during the application process for employment, contracts, and/or licenses. Councilman Ray made a motion to approve the Memorandum of Agreement with SAVE as presented by Attorney Dickey. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
The Mayor reported that council needed to discuss whether to hold the second meeting in December. After a brief discussion, Councilman Rawlings made a motion to cancel the December 17, 2009 council meeting. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Council was advised that the clerks working in City Hall and the maintenance personnel were requesting permission to use their leave time to be closed on Christmas Eve which falls on Thursday this year. Councilman Myrick made a motion to allow the offices and the maintenance department to be closed on Christmas Eve provided employees used leave time as payment for the time off. Councilwoman Winn seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Councilman Myrick extended his appreciation to the elected officials who were leaving office this year and thanked them for all the help they had been to him and for their many years of service to the City of Bloomingdale.
Mayor Tipton stated an executive session had been called for discussion of land acquisition and personnel issues. Councilman Myrick made a motion to adjourn into executive session, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. At the conclusion of the executive session, Councilwoman Winn made a motion to return to the general session and execute the signed affidavit as required by the Open Records Act. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. Mayor Tipton reported that council had reviewed bids received by the City from independent contractors to perform the duties of the Land Disturbing Activities inspection officer and perform all building inspections required for construction permits issued within the City limits of Bloomingdale. The Mayor stated that there were two bids received. One bid did not meet the requirements of the bid notice and the other bid was from City Council-elect Dennis Baxter. Councilman Myrick made a motion to enter into an agreement with Dennis Baxter to perform the duties as outlined in the bid notice for the fees as he proposed, Councilman Strozier seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
The accounts payable were presented for consideration with Councilman Ray making a motion to pay the bills. Councilwoman Winn seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Being no further business, Councilman Waller made a motion to adjourn at 7:45pm with a standing ovation from all present in acknowledgment of his 35+ years of service to the City. Councilwoman Winn seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Respectfully submitted, Sandra Jones, City Clerk
Mayor Tipton and all council members were present at the meeting.
Note: Section § 50-14-1 of the Official Code of the State of Georgia Annotated requires that the minutes shall, as a minimum, include a description of each motion or other proposal made, and a record of all votes. These minutes meet the minimum requirements. However, in an attempt to provide as much information as possible to the citizens, the recording clerk has included additional background data and discussion on the subjects presented to council. The statements of individuals are not verbatim and may be summary in nature.