Official minutes of the November 20, 2014 Council Meeting
Approved by City Council December 4, 2014
The council meeting was called to order by Mayor Rozier with George Foley giving the invocation. Councilmembers Griffin, Grizzard, Kerby, Key, Myrick, Otto, Attorney Raymond Dickey, City Administrator Charles Akridge and Asst. City Clerk Diane Proudfoot were present.
Councilman Myrick made a motion to approve the draft copy of the minutes of the November 6, 2014 council meeting. Councilman Grizzard seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. Councilman Kerby made a motion to approve the agenda of the November 20, 2014 meeting. Councilwoman Griffin seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Mayor Rozier informed council that a public hearing was set for tonight to receive citizen input on a request from Janet Daniels to obtain a “Conditional Use” permit for a Child Care Center in an R-1 Zoning District at 310 Ash Street.
Mrs. Daniels made the following opening comments:
She clarified that the ages for the day care are six weeks to four years; Currently has 40 children from 6:00am to 6:30pm; The traffic is not going to be as massive as being assumed; People would be using other streets not just Ash Street; Future plan would be to acquire Georgia Lottery Pre-K; Would provide job opportunities.
Questions from Council:
What are the plans for the building; how many children currently; what are the ages; what is the plan for the K-12; what are the future plans?
She would be investing approximately $100,000 for upgrades to include replacing all windows, paint, brick the building, install privacy fence along property line, plant trees, flowers, shrubs, install 30 x 30 playground areas with access only from the building; currently has 40 children ranging in ages of six weeks to 4 years; State has approved her for 46; after a year could apply for the Georgia Lottery Pre-K program but it would still be 4 year Pre-K; the long term future plan would be to offer before and after school care ages up to 12 years; the State would determine the number of children allowed.
Mayor Rozier recognized County Commissioner Dean Kicklighter who was in attendance tonight and offered him a moment to speak and Commissioner Kicklighter stated he was here to observe.
Comments from citizens:
Holly Young, Real Estate Agent for Ash Street Baptist Church, stated there has been a lot of activity on the property after it was listed with Mrs. Daniels being the candidate that could acquire funds for renovation; other interested parties have been unsuccessful in obtaining renovation funds; she stated that both Bloomingdale and Pooler Elementary Schools are located in residential areas with far more attendance than what is proposed for the day care; the Daniels' wish to upgrade the neighborhood and want to be good neighbors; their business has been established for four years so it is not a startup day care.
Wendy Barber 311 Ash Street: As an adjacent property owner would be effected by whatever goes on the property; presented a petition with 59 names opposing the day care; they have a quiet neighborhood; she contacted the State Brighter Start Program and was informed that the square footage required for the Pre-K is 35 square foot per child which the building could hold up to 172 children; there would be an increase in traffic including delivery trucks; feels that someone purchasing a 7,000 square foot building would be to increase the day care business; there are 59 signatures on the petition of people who feel they will be effected should this business be allowed.
Roger Ray 309 Ash Street: The church has to sale the property to pay debts and any remaining funds will be going to the Savannah Baptist Association and the Georgia Baptist Children's Home.
Lori Knight & Mary Reese 316 Ash Street: A 20 year resident who has now reached retirement and wants to enjoy sitting outside; concerned over traffic and noise coming and going to the daycare; concerned for the safety of children riding bikes, skateboards, etc.
Julie Ray 309 Ash Street: Treasurer/Secretary of Church; concerned over being turned down when there is another day care a couple blocks up on Ash Street; does not oppose the day care even if she wasn't associated with the church; there was a previous offer which was turned down because it would have been a disappoint to the neighborhood; the church approved the offer from the Daniels' because they would be able to upgrade and improve.
Cory Harper 209 Ash Street: He attended Ash Street Church and sorry to see it close; buses begin picking up children at 5:45 in the mornings; there are five bus stops at the corner Cregor & Ash; since the installation of the canal there isn’t enough shoulder of the road for the children to stand on; with 40 children attending this day care there will be more traffic on Ash Street; they have a quiet neighborhood; does not want more traffic; should council approve this request the State could approve a higher attendance.
Brian Thomas 313 Ash Street: Lives across the street; enjoys quiet neighborhood; hates to see the church close; the street is busy with pedestrians; four points he would like council to consider: 1) Are you willing to increase car traffic that already has a lot of pedestrian traffic; 2) Are you ready to turn a nice quiet neighborhood into a neighborhood that will be worried about being run off the road; 3) Is the economy worth the detriment of local morale; 4) How would you feel if you lived there?
Michelle Ward of Brian L McCord CPA: Works next to the current Little Angels Day Care with hours of 8:30am to 4:30pm and can say there is a very little traffic; enjoys seeing the children out during play time; this is a nice quiet daycare.
McKenzie Williams lives on corner of Oak & Cregor Street: Lives one street over from Ash Street; was attracted to this area three years ago because it was a nice neighborhood and her three children could ride bikes; neighbors keep an eye out for strangers; doesn't feel this would be the best location for the daycare.
Janet Daniels stated she is concerned that for 54 years the church had traffic coming and going on Sunday mornings and evenings, Wednesdays, during Vacation Bible School and other events with no complaints but now that a day care business is interested in the property there is traffic issues.
Wendy Barber stated the day care would be five days a week, all day long and is a big issue with the residents.
There being no further comment Mayor Rozier closed the public hearing
Administrative & Committee reports:
Recreation Director George Foley: Presented $25, $50 & $100 Wal-mart gift cards awards to the "Scarecrow" contest winners: Third Place $25 - Walton Cox; Second Place - Barbara Rawlings; First Place - Marty Thompson.
Director Foley encouraged everyone to participate in the sports programs which are; Football, Cheerleading and soccer. This year was the first year for 2 & 3 year old soccer. The future goal of the Recreation Department is to construct a gymnasium and a fund is established for that purpose should anyone wish to contribute. The Senior Citizen program is active and other activities will be added in the future.
Councilman Grizzard stated there were two events last week that were well attended – the Senior Citizen luncheon and the First Growing up Bloomingdale Reunion which was very successful with over 100 attending, plans are to make this an annual event. The next Senior Citizen luncheon will be in February.
Mayor Rozier stated that the Annual Christmas Tree Lighting will be held on Saturday, December 6 at 6:00pm at the History Museum.
possibility of other things being established on the property which may be worse than the day care. Should another church purchase the property and wish to operate a daycare as an extension of the church activities it may not be something council could deny, that would be determined by the ordinance.
Mayor Rozier called for a roll call vote of the motion to deny the conditional use permit: Councilwoman Griffin - no; Councilman Otto - no; Councilman Myrick - yes; Councilman Kerby - yes; Councilwoman Key - yes; Councilman Grizzard - yes. The motion to deny the "Conditional Use" permit for a Day Care Center in an R-1 Zoning District at 310 Ash Street passes with four yea votes and two nay votes.
Mayor Rozier reported that this concluded the items presented for consideration for inclusion on the Council agenda prior to the deadline of Wednesday, October 29, 2014.
Mayor Rozier expressed to the Daniels' that he is disappointed they were unable to locate their business where they wanted and if the deciding vote had fallen upon him he would have also voted to deny the conditional use due to the location. He thanked the citizens for attending and invited them to attend often and their input is important.
The accounts payables were presented with Councilman Myrick making a motion to pay the bills, Councilwoman Key seconded the motion and it passed without opposition.
There being no further business, Councilman Kerby made a motion to adjourn at 7:59pm. Councilwoman Griffin seconded the motion and it passed without opposition.
Diane Proudfoot, Asst. City Clerk
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.