Official minutes of Council Meeting – May 20, 2010
approved by council June 17, 2010
Mayor Tipton called the meeting to order with Rev. Darrell Bailey leading in prayer. Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the minutes of the May 6, 2010 council meeting. Councilman Crosby seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes. Councilman Crosby made a motion to approve the agenda of the May 20, 2010 meeting with the addition of two (2) items that were inadvertently left off the agenda. These items included two home occupation license requests. Councilwoman Griffin seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
The Mayor reported that Councilman Kerby was not in attendance at tonight’s meeting due to a work emergency.
Mayor Tipton informed citizens that we have two special guests in attendance tonight to honor four of our former elected officials. State Representative Ann Purcell and Senator Buddy Carter had introduced House and Senate Resolutions during the last legislative session to recognize Ronald Waller, Billy Strozier, Margel Winn and Mike Ray for their many years of dedicated service and commitment to the citizens of the City of Bloomingdale. The Mayor advised that in February several friends and family members made a trip to the Capitol to attend the house session to witness the presentation of the Resolutions to these four citizens. The Mayor turned the floor over to Representative Purcell and Senator Carter to present the resolutions to these four citizens on the city level. Representative Purcell described how she and Senator Carter had introduced resolutions for these four individuals in their respective chambers and how proud they were to honor them for their years of service, especially with this being the 35th anniversary year of the incorporation of the City of Bloomingdale. She reported that they were able to honor them in the General Assembly both at the House level and at the Senate level. Representative Purcell stated that Mr. Ronald Waller, who had served on council for the City of Bloomingdale’s entire thirty-five years of incorporation, was invited by the house speaker to the podium where he was presented his resolution. Senator Carter acknowledged that one of the special privileges that he & Representative Purcell have by being in the House and Senate is to be able to recognize outstanding Georgians for their contributions to their communities. Senator Carter stated it was an honor to be able to recognize these four public servants and thanked them for their many years of service.
During administrative & committee reports, Councilwoman Griffin stated she had a request from a citizen, which happened to be her mother-in-law, asking that the councilmembers please speak a little louder so that citizens could hear them. She reported that the painting at the concession building is underway, the softball/baseball season is coming to an end, and the recreation department is working on putting together a soccer camp. She also reported that the installation of the playground equipment at the pavilion next to the Community Building will begin on Monday. Councilman Myrick reported the city is now debt free with the council supporting the paying off the water bond. He further reported that the City had set aside funds that would sustain the city for six months should a disaster hit and has an emergency fund if the city has the need for a major repair. Councilman Myrick expressed his excitement that the new fire station project is to begin very soon. Councilman Crosby informed council that the Planning Commission will be holding a series of workshops to review the ordinances to see what updates may need to be addressed. Council Baxter reported that the pre-construction meeting for the fire station project was held this past week and the demolition is scheduled to begin June 1st. Councilman Rawlings commented that the good stewardship of the former elected officials who were honored tonight is one of the reasons the city is debt free today. Councilman Rawlings informed council and citizens that the History Society will be meeting at the community building on Sunday, May 30th at 2:00pm to pay tribute to the veterans by visiting Ellis, Oakridge and Powers Cemeteries as part of their annual Memorial Day activity and invited everyone to join them. Mayor Tipton stated he felt the Recreation Department has a good group of volunteers working with the children of our community. He noted that the slogan “Winning responsibility equals success” would help to guide our young people toward being more responsible in their endeavors rather than just striving to win.
The Mayor advised council that at the last meeting council had approved the 1st reading of the amendment to the City’s beer and wine ordinance to include the minimum limits imposed by Georgia State Law. Councilman Crosby made a motion to approve the 2nd reading and adoption of the amendment to the beer and wine ordinance. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton reported the Bloomingdale Police Department has three vehicles that had already been declared as surplus, but did not sell and Chief Gossett is requesting council to authorize the disposal of these scrap vehicles for the best price he can obtain. The vehicles and the minimum bids previously set are as follows: 1999 Ford Crown Vic – VIN #107269 ($1500); 2001 Ford Crown Vic, VIN #116468 ($2000); & 2002 Ford Crown Vic – VIN #103532 ($2000). Councilman Baxter made a motion to authorize the disposal of the three vehicles as listed for the best price Chief Gossett can obtain. Councilwoman Griffin seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
The Mayor presented the bids on the generators and transfer switches for City Hall, Maintenance Department & the new Fire Station. NOTE: The bids received from Worry Free Power arrived after the deadline of 5:00pm Friday, May 14, 2010 and were not considered. The bids presented were Pro Power Solutions (Generac) @ $84,632; Yancey Power Systems @ $91,445; Cummins Power South @ $93,660.15; and Power & Equipment Solutions @ $107,517. After a brief discussion Councilman Baxter made a motion to table this matter to allow council an opportunity to review the specs and also allow Councilman Kerby to be included in the decision. Councilman Crosby seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton presented ordinance amendments as required by the State of Georgia to the Stormwater Management Ordinance and the Erosion & Sedimentation Ordinance which must be submitted to the state by June 30, 2010. Councilman Crosby made a motion to approve the 1st reading of the amendments to the ordinances. Councilman Baxter seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
The Mayor advised council that the State of Georgia Department of Revenue has requested that the City submit our millage rate certification for 2009. The City is required to complete and submit this report on an annual basis even if we do not levy a millage rate. Councilman Myrick made a motion to set the millage rate at 10 mils and roll it back to zero and to submit a copy to the Chatham County Tax Commissioner and the Clerk of Court. Councilman Crosby seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Councilman Crosby excused himself from the discussion of the next item on the agenda.
The City received a request from Cathy Williams who is considering the purchase of the residence located at #902 E. Highway 80 for use as both a residence and a home office/dog grooming business. The property is located in a C-1 zone, but in order to use the structure as both a residence and business, the business would have to qualify as a “home occupation”. Ms. Williams is requesting a response from council as to whether she can have the business and live at this residence before purchasing the property. Councilman Myrick made a motion to take no action on this matter until the requestor could be in attendance at a meeting. Councilman Baxter seconded the motion and it passed with four affirmative votes.
Councilman Crosby returned to the podium.
Mayor Tipton reported that several elected officials met with Pam Helton, GMA’s program representative, last week to discuss the Revenue Recovery for Debt Collection program offered by the Georgia Municipal Association and its possible benefits to the City. The program provides the collection of unpaid debts on a contingency-based fee and they also report unpaid debts to the credit bureau. The fees range from 16.5% to 19% based on the age of the debt. Several methods of collection are used; however, the program does not include the filing of property liens or court action. The collection agency involved in the program is Penn Credit Corporation and Attorney Dickey has reviewed the contract. Councilman Myrick made a motion to execute the Revenue Recovery contract with Penn Credit Corporation as part of the Georgia Municipal Association’s Debt Collection Service on accounts that are ninety (90) days past due. Councilman Baxter seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
The Mayor advised council that when the latest codification of the city ordinances took place in 2008 the words “garbage fees” had inadvertently been left off as one of the services for which the City can execute a property lien for unpaid bills in the Solid Waste Ordinance Chapter 62, Article I, Section 62-8. Councilman Baxter made a motion to approve the 1st reading to add the words “garbage fees” to the Solid Waste Ordinance to correct the wording, to dispense with the second reading and to approved the amendment. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton presented the following recommendations from the Planning Commission:
1) Planning Commission recommends that the following wording be added to Appendix A – Zoning, Article IV. General Provisions, Section 411(a) Planned Development overlay District (PDOD) –“Before approval of planned development overlay district, the city council may require a contract with safeguards satisfactory to the city attorney guaranteeing completion of the development plan in a period to be specified by the city council, but which period shall not exceed five years unless extended by the city council for due cause shown. Such guarantee may include the submission of a performance bond in the amount as set by the city council. In any case, failure to begin substantial development within two years of the effective date of approval shall automatically void the development plan and the parcel shall revert back to the zoning classification in effect immediately prior to approval. The violation of any provision of the plot plan and written report, as submitted and approved under the provisions provided herein, shall constitute a violation of this ordinance.” It was noted: The City’s zoning consultant advises that to avoid conflict with the Georgia Zoning Procedures Law, the property cannot revert back to a previous zoning classification without first following standard zoning procedures, but the City could initiate the rezoning process and upon approval by City Council, the property could be rezoned to a prior classification. Councilman Baxter made a motion to approve the 1st reading of the amendment, dispense with the 2nd reading and approve the ordinance amendment. The motion passed with affirmative votes from Councilmembers Baxter, Crosby, Griffin and Rawlings. Councilman Myrick voted against the motion.
2) The Planning Commission recommends that the words per parcel be added to the current Appendix A – Zoning, Article XVI. Schedule of Fees, Section 1600. List (b) ordinance – which currently states: “Any person, firm, or corporation filing an application for an amendment to the zoning ordinance of Bloomingdale shall pay a fee of $100.00 upon the filing of the petition to the planning commission.” Councilman Crosby made a motion to accept the recommendation from Planning Commission to amend the ordinance and add the words per parcel after “fee of $100.00”. Councilman Baxter seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
3) The Planning Commission recommends approval of the preliminary plan of Phase I of the major subdivision of Stagecoach Estates presented by Robert Oglesby with the following stipulations:
A) The maintenance of the ditches/swells on each lot and the detention pond will be the responsibility of the land
owners and this requirement will be included in the sales contracts.
B) The developer, Robert Oglesby, will bring the road up to minor standards and provide drainage as required by
Bloomingdale’s standards. Mr. Oglesby agrees to provide all necessary equipment and labor to pave from the
end of the existing pavement of Stagecoach Road to the end of the roadway and the cul-de-sac provided the
City of Bloomingdale furnishes the asphalt needed for the project.
C) The stipulations will be included in an agreement between Robert Oglesby and the City of Bloomingdale as
prepared by City Attorney Raymond Dickey. Councilman Crosby made a motion to approve the preliminary
plan for Robert Oglesby with the above stipulations. Councilman Baxter seconded the motion and it passed
with five affirmative votes.
Councilman Crosby informed council that the Planning Commission has scheduled public hearings to be held at their next meeting on June 8, 2010 for the following matters:
1) A zoning map amendment submitted by W.E. Gamble Real Estate Broker on behalf of Fortune Plaza, Inc. to change the zoning of properties located at #1705, #1707, #1709, #1711, #1713, #1715 & #1717 E. Hwy 80 from C-1/PDOD to C-1.
2) A zoning map amendment submitted by Terry & Debra Stark to rezone their properties located at #1406 E. Hwy 80, #1402 E. Hwy 80 & the vacant lot consisting of 1.68 acres directly behind this tract that abuts Conaway Road from R-1 to C-1.
3) A zoning map amendment submitted by Cecilene Kelley for her property located at #1408 E. Hwy 80 from R-1 to C-1.
4) A zoning map amendment submitted by F. Edward Daly for his property located at #1410 E. Hwy 80 from R-1 to C-1.
The Mayor recognized Edward Cribbs who submitted a request for a home occupation license to operate the “office only” of a heating & air-conditioning business located at his residence at #312 Maple Street. Mr. Cribbs has indicated he is the only employee and there would be no traffic coming to his home. Mr. Cribbs rents the property and has provided a letter of approval from the property owner. Councilman Baxter made a motion to waive the public hearing and issue the license. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton presented a request from Betty Bird to operate a family day care from her residence located at #101 Ash Street. The residence in located in an R-1 zone and the zoning allows child care as a “conditional use”. Mrs. Bird is licensed by the State of Georgia to keep a maximum of six children and has operated for many years, but the state is now requiring home day care operators to obtain a local license. Councilman Myrick made a motion to set a public hearing to receive citizen input on this request at the council meeting on June 17, 2010. Councilman Crosby seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Councilman Crosby made a motion to schedule a workshop sometime in July with an open agenda and no time limits to allow members an opportunity to freely discuss items related to the operation of the City and further requested the workshop be held outside of the City limits. Councilman Baxter seconded the motion but noted that although it is not uncommon for elected officials to hold workshops outside of their corporate limits, it is a requirement for these workshops to be advertized and for an agenda to be set. The Mayor asked Councilman Crosby his purpose for holding the workshop outside of Bloomingdale and was advised that he felt this would be less distracting for the elected officials. Some concerns were expressed about generating unnecessary expenses for a workshop and the Mayor stated he felt we should keep the costs related to a workshop to a minimum. After a brief discussion, the Mayor asked that council members provide the clerk with dates that would be good for them and we would discuss the dates at the next meeting. The motion was withdrawn and no action was taken.
Councilman Baxter made a motion to adjourn into executive session for the discussion of land acquisition and personnel issues. Councilman Crosby seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
At the conclusion of the executive session, Councilman Baxter made a motion to return to the general session and to execute the signed affidavit as required by the Open Meetings Act. Councilwoman Griffin seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton turned the floor over to Sandra Jones who presented her letter of retirement from the City of Bloomingdale after serving since December 14, 1981 as its City Clerk. Ms. Jones stated that her date of retirement is scheduled for December 31, 2010 with the understanding that she would be willing to work until the first of next year if council so desires to allow time for training of personnel. She thanked the Mayor, City Council, staff members, and citizens for their support and encouragement during her many years with the City and stated she look forward to spending more time with her family and friends.
Councilman Myrick made a motion to pay the bills, Councilman Crosby seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Being no further business, Councilman Rawlings made a motion to adjourn at 8:45pm. Councilwoman Griffin seconded the motion and it passed with five affirmative votes.
Respectfully submitted, Diane Proudfoot, Asst. City Clerk
Mayor Tipton and Councilmembers Baxter, Crosby, Griffin, Myrick and Rawlings were present for the meeting. Councilman Kerby was out due to a work emergency.
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.