March 20, 2008
Mayor Tipton called the meeting to order and led citizens in the pledge of allegiance to the flag. The Mayor stated that former Councilmember Herman Rawlins had passed away this morning and he expressed his sadness at the loss of such a fine man who had served this community well. Mayor Tipton pointed out that not only had Mr. Rawlins been on City Council for over twenty years, he had been involved in the development of the Bloomingdale Volunteer Fire Department and had played a vital role in its success. Several people commented on various other contributions Mr. Rawlins had made to the community over the years that included his willingness to fry chicken for just about any fund raising activity that took place in Bloomingdale or in the surrounding areas as well as frying fish or cooking barbeque for numerous other events. Mr. Rawlins was an active member of the Bloomingdale Lions Club and had received recognition from the Richard T. Turner Masonic Lodge for his 50-year membership. Mayor Tipton also expressed his condolences to the family of Ann Williams who had been a long-time citizen of the community and who was a member of the Bloomingdale History Society. Other citizens pointed out her past involvement in the recreation department as well as her willingness to work with the young people in the community. After these comments, Brad Proudfoot led in the opening prayer.
The Mayor presented the minutes of the March 6th & March 10th meetings for council’s consideration and Councilman Ray made a motion to approve these minutes. Councilman Waller seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. The Mayor presented the agenda for the March 20, 2008 meeting and Councilwoman Winn made a motion to approve said agenda. Councilman Myrick seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Under administrative and committee reports, Councilman Strozier reported that he, along with City Administrator Brady, had met with the owners/tenants of Douglas Plaza to discuss repairs that needed to be made to portions of Douglas Court. Councilman Strozier stated that the owner/tenants agreed to share in the cost of the repairs. Mayor Tipton commended the general office, public safety and public works employees for the fine job they were doing for the City. The Mayor pointed out that the public works department had been working diligently on the cleaning out of the ditches throughout the City and expressed his appreciation for their hard work.
Mayor Tipton stated there was no old business on the agenda.
Council discussed the meeting schedule for the summer months. Mayor Tipton stated that City Ordinance allows for only one regularly scheduled council meeting during the months of June, July, August & September provided council votes to initiate this change. Councilman Waller made a motion to hold one regularly scheduled council meeting in June, July, August & September. Councilman Strozier seconded the motion. Prior to the vote on the issue, Barbara Griffin questioned why council would vote to hold only one scheduled meeting per month when during this period last year council had several called meetings. Ms. Griffin stated these called meetings are not properly advertised and citizens are not aware they are being held. Mayor Tipton advised her that there are instances when called council meetings are necessary and are sometimes needed even when there are two regularly scheduled meetings a month and he stated that called council meetings are advertised as required by state law. The Mayor called for a vote on the motion and it passed with affirmative votes from Councilmembers Myrick, Ray, Strozier, Waller and Winn. Councilman Rawlings voted against the motion.
Mayor Tipton recognized Commissioner Dean Kicklighter who came in during this discussion and asked if he had any comments. Commissioner Kicklighter stated that the item he came to address was not on the agenda, but expressed his appreciation to the Mayor and Council for everything they did for the City and its citizens and stated that if he could provide any assistance to let him know. The Mayor thanked him for his attendance at the meeting.
The Mayor reported that City Administrator Brady had been working to obtain bids for the preparation of the updates on the City’s Solid Waste Management Plan and Comprehensive Plan and asked that he present this information to council. City Administrator Brady stated that he had obtained quotes from Integrated Science & Engineering and Lott+Barber Architects for these projects. Mr. Brady stated that after a comparison of the bids he was recommending that the City contract with Integrated Science & Engineering for preparation of the update to the Solid Waste Management Plan at a cost of $14,935 and that the City contract with Lott+Barber Architects for the Update to the Comprehensive Plan at a cost of $15,200. Mr. Brady explained that the bid from ISE for the solid waste plan was based on four (4) other cities participating in the project, but if these cities did not join in, the cost would be $19,415.55. Mr. Brady stated that even at the higher price, the cost was $3,000 lower than the bid received from Lott+Barber. The Mayor asked if he knew if the other cities were participating and Mr. Brady advised him that he thought all four were going to participate. Councilman Strozier pointed out that both of these projects were state-mandated and the City had no choice but to prepare these plans. Mr. Brady advised council that the bid from Lott+Barber on the update to the comprehensive plan was actually $500 higher than ISE’s bid, but since they had been very involved in planning and zoning issues with the City and was familiar with our zoning ordinances, he was recommending we use their firm to prepare our plan. Councilman Rawlings asked if the update to the comprehensive plan was going to be done to DCA standards and he was assured by Mr. Brady that both companies were aware of these requirements when they provided their quotes. Councilman Strozier asked if tonight’s vote from council would be on ISE’s quote of $14,935 for the solid waste plan and Mr. Brady stated that is was, but if this figure changed due to lack of participation from the other cities, the council would have the opportunity to consider the higher bid before a contract was awarded. Being no further discussion, Councilman Myrick made a motion to contract with Integrated Science & Engineering to prepare the City of Bloomingdale’s Solid Waste Management Plan update at a cost of $14,935. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes. Councilman Myrick made a motion to contract with Lott+Barber Architects to prepare the Update to the City of Bloomingdale’s Comprehensive Plan at a cost of $15,200. Councilman Strozier seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton stated that the Planning Commission was recommending the approval of the amended site plan submitted to them at their March 11, 2008 meeting by Quality Irriscape for property located at #5 Adams Road with adjustments to fence screening, setbacks, and landscaping. Mayor Tipton stated that the changes requested by the Planning Commission had been made to the site plan being presented tonight for council’s consideration. The Mayor recognized Brad Proudfoot who explained that the amended site plan included a change in the location of the building and changes in the parking. Mr. Proudfoot stated that additional landscaping had been added and the fencing would be screened. Barbara Griffin asked if chainlink fencing was allowed in this zoning district and was advised that council had already approved a variance for the fencing on this property. Ms. Griffin questioned why ordinances were even adopted if variances could be granted. Mayor Tipton advised her that there were variance clauses in several ordinances that would allow council to consider each case on an individual basis. Councilman Rawlings pointed out that any ordinance could be appealed to the appeals board. He stated that, in our case, council was the appeal board and he felt this was a positive thing since there were cases when the variances were warranted. It was noted that there was already chainlink fencing at the impound yard next to the police department, around the well site, and at the maintenance department and council felt that the chainlink fencing should be allowed. It was also noted that chainlink fencing is needed for security purposes for some businesses. Councilwoman Winn made a motion to approve the amended site plan as presented by Quality Irriscape, Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
The Mayor reported that the Planning Commission had scheduled a public hearing to be held on Tuesday, April 8, 2008 to receive citizen input on the rezoning request received from Kern-Coleman, Inc. for property located on the north side of Highway 80 just east of Douglas Court. The property is currently zoned R-A/C-1 and the proposed zoning is C-2/I-1. Several issues were raised about providing water and sewer to the location and some citizens expressed their concern about an industrial zoning district located that close to residential developments. Mayor Tipton encouraged those citizens having concerns about the development to attend the April 8th public hearing.
Mike Wedincamp stated that it was his understanding the rezoning request on the Stagecoach Road and Highway 80 property was on the agenda, but was advised that a request had not been submitted by the developer to be placed on the agenda. Mr. Wedincamp stated he had some information to share with council regarding access to the development just across the street from the Food Lion and the Mayor asked that he leave a copy of it with the clerk.
Willie Mitchell stated he had not received a response from the Mayor on correspondence he had previously sent to him and was advised that the Attorney would be sending out something to him soon.
Mayor Tipton reported that an executive session needed to be held for the discussion of personnel and attorney/client issues. Councilwoman Winn 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 to execute the affidavit as required by the Open Meetings Law and make it a part of the permanent records of council. Councilman Ray seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton stated that this concluded the items presented for consideration for inclusion on the council agenda prior to the deadline of Friday, March 14, 2008.
The accounts payable were reviewed. Councilman Ray made a motion to pay the bills, Councilman Rawlings seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Being no further business, Councilman Waller made a motion to adjourn at 8:50pm, Councilman Strozier seconded the motion and it passed with six affirmative votes.
Mayor Tipton and all councilmembers 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 present to council. The statements of individuals are not verbatim and may be summary in nature.