STATE OF GEORGIA

 

 

COUNTY OF HENRY

 

 

 

The Henry County Board of Commissioners held a Regular Meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 19, 2004, in the Community Room, County Administration Building, 140 Henry Parkway, McDonough, Georgia.  Notice of this meeting was posted on the bulletin board in the entrance foyer of the County Administration Building.  The Daily Herald was notified of this meeting.  Those present were:

 

            Leland Maddox, Chairman, presiding

            Lee Holman, Vice-Chairman, District V Commissioner

            Warren E. Holder, District I Commissioner

            Gary M. Freedman, District II Commissioner

            Jason Harper, District III Commissioner

            Gerry Adams, District IV Commissioner

 

Also attending were Linda Angus, County Manager; Patrick Jaugstetter, County Attorney; Susan B. Craig, County Clerk; Peggy L. Malcolm, Deputy County Clerk; Rob Magnaghi, Deputy County Manager and Public Safety Division Director; Danny Taylor, Economic Development Division Director; Michael Harris, Public Works Division Director; Julie Hoover-Ernst, Community Relations Specialist; and others.

 

Chairman Maddox called the meeting to order and said he had a couple of announcements.  He said the below listed consideration of a Consent Order/Rezoning will not be heard on this date as previously advertised.  It will be heard on November 2, 2004 at 9:00 a.m.:

 

·        Project True North – RZ-03-35 – Project True North of McDonough, Georgia requests a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to R-2 (Single-Family Residence) for property located on Mt. Carmel Road to the east of Chambers Road, in Land Lots 115 & 142 of the 6th District.  The property consists of 97.6 +/- acres, and the request is for a Planned Development.

 

Also, the below listed rezoning has been postponed by the applicant:

 

·        Obinna Ezenekew – RZ-04-31 – Obinna Ezenekew of Atlanta, Georgia, requests a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to C-2 (General Commercial) for property located on the eastern side of Ga. Hwy.155, north of Valley Road in Land Lot 133 of the 11th District.  The property contains 2.28 +/- acres, and the request is for a minor automotive repair center.

 

Chairman Maddox asked for an Acceptance of the Agenda.  Commissioner Holman asked the SPLOST staff if they had any emergency issues to be added to the Agenda.  Mr. Roy Clack, SPLOST Project Manager, said there are no issues to be added.  Commissioner Holman made the motion to accept the Agenda; Commissioner Holder seconded. 

 

Commissioner Harper stated out of public necessity he needed to amend the Agenda to adopt the resolution regarding the adjustment of the Sheriff’s deputies salaries and secondly, to issue a Proclamation proclaiming “Red Ribbon Week” to be added at the beginning of the Agenda.  Commissioner Holman amended his motion; Commissioner Holder amended his second.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Holman, Holder, Freedman, Harper, and Adams voting in favor.

 

 

PUBLIC COMMENT(S):

 

There were no public comments.

 

 

PROCLAMATION - “RED RIBBON WEEK”

 

            WHEREAS, drug and alcohol abuse knows no social boundaries and its consequences are felt in every sector of society, but most especially in our children; and

 

            WHEREAS, the national Red Ribbon Campaign will be celebrated throughout Georgia and the nation between October 23 and 31, 2004 to call attention to the devastating effects of substance abuse and inspire communities to begin campaigns empowering citizens to fight for drug-free homes and neighborhoods; and

 

            WHEREAS, the Henry County Board of Commissioners is committed to the safety and well-being of all our citizens, and protecting our children’s future; and

 

            WHEREAS, the Board wishes to demonstrate our commitment to drug-free, healthy lifestyles;

 

            NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the Henry County Board of Commissioners, do hereby proclaim the week of October 23-31, 2004 as “Red Ribbon Week” in Henry County in order to increase awareness of drug-free living, promote substance abuse prevention and encourage our citizens to join with us in wearing a red ribbon to show support of this worthwhile campaign and demonstrate a commitment to a drug-free County.

 

Ms. Julie Hoover-Ernst, Henry County Public Relations Specialist, said the mission of the Red Ribbon Campaign is to present a unified and visible commitment toward the creation of a Drug-Free America.  She asked the citizens to join the Henry County Commissioners in wearing this red ribbon every day next week as a symbol of the community’s commitment in the fight against drinking and drug abuse in order to help children grow up safe, healthy and drug-free.  Ms. Ernst handed red ribbons out to the audience with educational coloring books for their children.

 

(Each Commissioner pinned a red ribbon on their lapel and pictures were made.)

 

 

MR. RICK LOFFERT AND THE CITIZENS OF FARMER DRIVE REQUEST TO APPEAR BEFORE THE BOARD REGARDING THE RIGHT-OF-WAY ACQUISITION NEEDED FOR THE FARMER DRIVE IMPROVEMENT PROJECT.

 

Chairman Maddox read the resolution and asked Mr. Rick Loffert, who lives at 233 Farmer Drive, Hampton, Georgia, to come forward to speak before the Board.  Mr. Loffert distributed handouts to the Board regarding the Farmer Drive paving project #4204452.  He said Farmer Drive is a small gravel road, consisting of twelve (12) homes, that runs northeast to southwest from Jonesboro Road toward Mt. Carmel Road.  It is currently on the SPLOST II short list and scheduled to be paved in the summer of 2004.  The current traffic count is approximately one hundred (100) cars per day, which places Farmer Drive in the low volume road category and, in the residents’ opinion, does not justify a $1.2 million expense for required widening, straightening, and paving of the road.  As a community, the residents have a plan to get Farmer Drive paved significantly under budget, and will allow Henry County to apply the savings toward the improvement of the N. Mt. Carmel Road/Jonesboro Road intersection, which is a high volume area.  Mr. Loffert said to receive State funds, the road needs to be widened and straightened to meet State guidelines and codes, which would be very expensive.  Road construction costs are much higher now than when the SPLOST budgets were developed.  Also he said a left turn lane from Jonesboro Road onto Farmer Drive is required for this project.  Mr. Loffert’s question was when Jonesboro Road becomes a four-lane divided highway, will the Georgia State DOT allow a left turn lane through the median for Farmer Drive.  He said their plan is to keep Farmer Drive a low volume road by paving this road with a cul-de-sac near Jonesboro Road.  His understanding is Farmer Drive has a forty (40’) foot right-of-way that should stay in place, and he requested Farmer Drive not be made any wider.  Mr. Loffert asked for the center line of the road to be centered from this forty (40’) foot right-of-way on property lines.  Lastly, he asked for no trees to be cut on Farmer Drive because it is a good environmental decision.  This plan would remove one graveled road from the SPLOST II short list; it would increase property values, thus increasing tax revenues, and it would improve the quality of life and health issues for the residents of Farmer Drive.  He said the savings from canceling project #4204452 and the paving for this plan would be nearly $1,000,000. 

 

Commissioner Adams asked if all the residents were in agreement with Mr. Loffert.

 

Mr. Loffert said a consensus was taken within the community and all were in agreement.

 

Commissioner Freedman said he had received a telephone call moments before the meeting from a resident (a lady) who is totally opposed to Mr. Loffert’s plan. 

 

Mr. Loffert said he was not aware of that. 

 

Mr. Rick Pellam, a Thornberry Subdivision resident, said his objective was to demonstrate support against Farmer Road being a “high risk” roadway and how road safety could be impacted.  He questioned the use of SPLOST funds.  He said at the August 19, 2003 BOC meeting, a list of signatures was submitted as a petition against precisely this movement to put an intersection into Jonesboro Road and the Farmer Road intersection.  He said the residents were against the significant development of Farmer Road, but were in strong support for the improvement of N. Mt. Carmel and the Jonesboro Road intersection.  Mr. Pellam stated the residents support the effective use of Farmer Road by developing a cul-de-sac to reduce the traffic and increase the safety and property values.  He stated if an intersection is constructed at Farmer Drive, with all of the intersections from subdivisions (Chambers, N. Mt. Carmel, etc.), it will create a traffic nightmare. 

 

Mr. Al Jordan, who lives at 151 N. Mt. Carmel Road, said he was representing the residents opposed to the plan that Mr. Loffert has proposed.  He stated he found it ironic the other group, who desire to put in a cul-de-sac on Farmer Drive, are the same ones who opposed the cul-de-sac last year for N. Mt. Carmel.  One of the reasons was they enjoyed the benefit of having the N. Mt. Carmel Park as well as the new subdivision across the street consisting of approximately 630 homes with the increased traffic being put on N. Mt. Carmel Road.  Mr. Jordan referred to the GRTA approval of Crystal Lake Subdivision where it refers to the conditions they had to meet.  He read one of the conditions, “to pave Farmer Road from N. Mt. Carmel Drive to Jonesboro Road.”   Next, he referred to Resolution 03-336 which is a resolution approving a rezoning request of this subdivision (signed by Chairman Leland Maddox) on the 19th day of August, 2003, and that same stipulation is in that resolution.  Mr. Jordan said, “this is an indication that in order to accept their proposal, you would have to void the agreement that GRTA approved and you would have to override the resolution signed last year.”   He said the road being paved on Farmer Drive would help to share and eliminate the heavy congestion at the intersection of N. Mt. Carmel and Jonesboro Roads, and it would give the opportunity for those coming out of the new subdivision to go along Farmer Drive and east on Jonesboro Road.  Those going west could still utilize N. Mt. Carmel.   N. Mt. Carmel is still a hazardous intersection; there were thirty-one (31) traffic accidents at that location over the last two (2) years.  Mr. Jordan said the County should continue to develop Farmer Drive, and develop it to the extent that it falls under the Georgia DOT guidelines.

 

Mr. Ken Dowdy, who lives at 125 N. Mt. Carmel Road, said he agreed with everything Mr. Jordan said.  He did not believe paving Farmer Drive would adversely affect Thornberry Subdivision.  He was not in favor of widening the road, but submitted it could be a narrower right-of-way and still meet the guidelines.  He said the County will need every highway and byway they can possibly obtain to handle the traffic coming from Crystal Lake eventually.  Mr. Dowdy said to cul-de-sac any road, including N. Mt. Carmel, is not a common sense approach. 

 

Ms. Carol Purcell, who lives at 244 Lovejoy Road in Hampton, Georgia, stated she is opposing Farmer Drive because when she travels Jonesboro Road, she uses Farmer Drive to access Jonesboro Road.  The intersection at N. Mt. Carmel is very dangerous to access, and it is easier to go Farmer Drive, plus Farmer Drive has been there as long as she could remember.  Also, the school bus uses Farmer Drive to access Jonesboro Road, and keeping Farmer Drive would alleviate some of the traffic.  Ms. Purcell said she did not understand how a group of homeowners can get together and decide to cul-de-sac their road.  If that is the case, then why didn’t Mitchell Road cul-de-sac their road.  She said she understood Farmer Drive not wanting all the traffic, but she did not understand why the development has not been made to make an entrance off of Dutchtown Road and for it to be paved so that some of the traffic can go out Dutchtown to offer another way for parents to get their children to Mt. Carmel Elementary School.  Ms. Purcell’s major concern was she owns property on Flippen Road Extension, and asked why the residents on Flippen Road could not make up an agreement to cul-de-sac Flippen Road.  To cul-de-sac Farmer Drive, will open up the opportunity to open up Flippen Road Extension and put it through to N. Mt. Carmel.  She said if one road is closed, then another road has to be opened.  Ms. Purcell also stated she understood someone on Farmer Drive gave a “hefty” contribution to one of the Commissioners.

 

Commissioner Freedman said Dutchtown Road will be paved; part of the requirements for that developer is to pave the road from Mt. Carmel to Jonesboro Road. 

 

Chairman Maddox stated either paving Farmer Drive or to cul-de-sac it is not going to have any affect.  He said, “if Flippen Road ever gets through, it is certainly going to make a north/south corridor on the west side of I-75, and it would help everybody west of I-75.” 

 

Commissioner Freedman understood the residents of Farmer Drive being concerned.  He said he has received telephone calls for five (5) years to pave that road.  He stated, “I knew we were opening N. Mt. Carmel Park and we were going to have soccer fields there, and it will be busy during nighttime traffic.  Crystal Lake Subdivision is being developed with over 600 homes, and we actually made them put their entrances aligned with Farmer Drive.  There will be a waterfall, overpass, and bridge at this location.  They have spent a considerable amount of money, at our direction, to align their entrance to that subdivision with Farmer Drive, based on the fact that we would pave Farmer Drive and make a good entrance on Jonesboro Road.  We have already spent $30,000 to $50,000 in design work to alleviate the traffic.  For that subdivision to go in, they had to get GRTA approval, and that subdivision was given approval only because GRTA approved it and said, ‘that road will be paved.’  We cannot undo that; those are the provisions they put on that subdivision.  Georgia DOT has given us a letter with recommendations, based on the two (2) intersections, that the Farmer Drive intersection has better sight distance and vertical alignment compared to the N. Mt. Carmel intersection.  They will permit a stop/go signal at Farmer and Jonesboro Roads, but they did not give any indication they would ever approve a signal at N. Mt. Carmel and Jonesboro Road, and that is a State highway.”  Commissioner Freedman thought the plan should go forth, because it would be a good thing to do with a good intersection at that location. 

 

Commissioner Holder said no one on this Board is a traffic engineer.  He said the first engineering report (that Commissioner Freedman referred to) does not say that N. Mt. Carmel “will not” be warranted, but that it “may not” be warranted since traffic will have two (2) separate intersections.  He thought it would be a travesty to cul-de-sac N. Mt. Carmel, because it is definitely a north/south route.  Whether Farmer Drive needs to be a cul-de-sac, Commissioner Holder could not answer that. 

 

Commissioner Freedman said N. Mt. Carmel is not on the SPLOST list; Farmer Drive is.  He said staff would need to look at the right-of-way where the requirement is sixty (60’) feet.  Instead of the eighty (80’) feet the County normally requires when widening a road, they have cut it down to sixty (60’) feet.  From a safety point of view, the Board should go ahead with the Farmer Drive alternative rather than N. Mt. Carmel. 

 

Commissioner Adams said Farmer Drive is a dirt road and not well traveled.  He said the Board could use the SPLOST money in a million other places.  Commissioner Adams made a motion to reduce the scope of work to alternative paving, a triple surface treatment, use the existing right-of-way, save the trees (where possible), allow the stormwater to run with the lay of the land (requesting the property owners to allow that), and ‘consider’ Farmer Drive as a cul-de-sac only when a light at N. Mt. Carmel is installed.  Commissioner Harper seconded. 

 

Commissioner Freedman questioned the triple surface efficiency with over 600 homes in Crystal Lake.  He said we should proceed with the safety issues and the commitments the Board gave on SPLOST. 

 

Commissioner Holder said, “with the motion on the floor tonight to change the plans already in place, before I vote on the motion, I would like Mr. Terry McMickle, SPLOST Transportation Manager, to see if this is a viable option, and we have not heard from the legal side.”

 

Commissioner Adams made a recommendation to table this issue for thirty (30) days.  Commissioner Holder agreed, because he wanted an engineering study to review.  Commissioner Adams withdrew his motion; Commissioner Harper withdrew his second.  Commissioner Adams made a motion to table the issue for thirty (30) days for an engineering study to be done; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Adams, Harper, Freedman, Holder, and Holman voting in favor.

 

 

THE HARVESTIME HIGHER LEARNING ACADEMY REQUEST TO APPEAR BEFORE THE BOARD REGARDING A LETTER OF SUPPORT.

 

Harvestime Higher Learning Academy (HHLA) is seeking future development in Henry County and is formulating a Federal grant request that represents a new construction development initiative for a state of the art daycare center.  This request is for a letter of support and to obtain a copy of the County’s five-year Community Development Plan. 

 

Ms. Wanda Porter, Executive Director of Harvestime Higher Learning Academy, said there is currently an academy at Harvestime Ministeries in Riverdale, Georgia.  She asked for the Board’s blessings and for a letter of support.  Ms. Porter said they are formulating a Federal grant proposal in response to the Federal Government’s request for an innovative model.  The Academy’s heart is with the poor, indigent, needy, the disenfranchised, sexually abused children with AIDS, and foster children.   Their mission is to provide a state-of-the-art childcare facility that will help the community.  The property chosen for this sight is on Highway 20 (Exit 216) and will be purchased from Mr. Marcus Trivette.  This property is zoned OI which is good for a daycare.  Ms. Porter handed out an Executive Summary to each Board Member for review. 

 

HHLA is a multi-service agency providing a broad base of culturally responsive social services that enhance the quality of life for children.  To support this directive, HHLA has developed a scientifically based research model, HHLA2 a state-of-the-art childcare pavilion.  HHLA2 draws a detailed picture with a strong community/village treatment to leverage the wisdom and experience of older adults as mentors for our children and promotes community involvement. 

 

Harvestime has developed a low-cost high impact intervention prevention and protocols the design to reach high-risk children who need help, handholding, and a reason to live.  It is a ministry for the community.   The mission of HHLA is to affirm the dignity, self-worth, and independence of all children by promoting and enhancing physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being.   Ms. Porter asked the Board for a letter of support.

 

Commissioner Freedman asked if HHLA has to have County approval to apply for the grant.  Ms. Porter said HHLA only needs a letter of support from the Board of Commissioners of Henry County.  She said this letter will “put them in the running” to receive a grant, because they are not promised a grant, and this is a mixed finance project. 

 

Commissioner Harper made the motion to authorize the Chairman to sign a letter on behalf of the Board of Commissioners supporting the grant request pursuant to two (2) conditions:      

 

1.      Subject to the County’s Legal staff’s approval that it is permissible to sign this request. 

2.      To make clear that at this time the County is not matching any money for the grant.

 

Commissioner Holder seconded.  Chairman Maddox stated the County Manager and he met with Ms. Porter and submitted to her the County’s 5-Year Plan.  Chairman Maddox stated he was in full support and said everything he was shown looked very nice.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Adams, Holman, and Freedman voting in favor. 

 

 

REZONING(S):

 

Coastal Holdings, LLC – RZ-04-32.

 

WHEREAS, Coastal Holdings, LLC (RZ-04-32) has applied for a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to R-2 (Single-Family Residence) for the development of a residential subdivision, for property located on Snapping Shoals Road, near Honey Lane, in Land Lots 110 and 111 of the 8th District consisting of 43.78 +/- acres; and

 

WHEREAS, all County and State requirements for legal advertisement and a public hearing have been met; and

 

WHEREAS, the Planning & Zoning Staff for Henry County has reviewed the request and submitted a report that is part of the public record; and

 

WHEREAS, the Henry County Municipal Planning Commission reviewed and recommended denial of the request on September 9, 2004; and

 

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Henry County Board of Commissioners approves the rezoning request with the following conditions:

 

1.                   The minimum lot size shall be 30,000 square feet.

 

2.                  The minimum house size shall be 2,200 square feet of heated space.

 

3.                  All lots shall front interior to the subdivision.

 

4.                  The homes shall be built on site (no modular or manufacture homes), all garages shall be side entry with two-car garages standard.

 

5.                  The developer shall install sidewalks on both sides of the street and along the frontage of the development.

 

6.                  All yards shall be sodded to the rear drip line of the homes.

 

7.                  Underground utilities and streetlights shall be required.

 

8.                  All homes shall be all sides brick or stone with the exception of the soffit, facia and decorative trim in vinyl or other suitable material such as Hardi-plank.

 

9.                  A buffer along all streams shall be maintained for a distance of fifty feet (50’) from the bank of such streams on both sides.

 

10.              Curbs and gutters shall be installed subject to approval of the Henry County Department of Transportation.

 

11.              The development shall have uniform mailboxes throughout.

 

12.              The Tree Ordinance shall be complied with.  There shall be no clear cutting of trees on this site.

 

13.              There shall be an undisturbed twenty-five foot (25’) buffer around the perimeter of the proposed subdivision.

 

14.              The retention pond shall be landscaped for aesthetic appeal subject to approval of Development Plan Review Department.

                                                                                                           

Commissioner Harper made the motion to approve the resolution with the fourteen (14) conditions; Commissioner Holman seconded.

 

Chairman Maddox asked if there was any opposition to this request; there was no response.

 

Mr. Phil Taylor, representing Coastal Holdings, LLC in McDonough, Georgia, said he was in agreement with all of the conditions. 

 

Commissioner Freedman said if this is the kind of subdivisions we can build in Henry County, then the County is going in the right direction.  He said Mr. Taylor did a good job on what he agreed to in the conditions.  Commissioner Freedman had one comment about the fifty (50’) foot setback on buffers along streams.  He said that is a new requirement and is a State law.  This should always be in every condition where there are streams going through a subdivision. 

 

The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Harper, Freedman, Adams, and Holman voting in favor. 

 

 

 

 

TAS Properties, LLC – RZ-04-33.

 

Tas Properties, LLC of McDonough, Georgia requests a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to R-2 (Single-Family Residence) to permit the development of a residential subdivision, for property located at 700, 740 and 796 Fairview Road, near Thurman Road, in Land Lots 163 & 190 of the 12th District.  The property contains 34.82 +/- acres, and the request is for a single-family residential subdivision.  The Henry County Municipal Planning Commission reviewed and recommended approval of the request on September 9, 2004 with the following conditions:

 

1.      All homes shall be a minimum of 3,000 square feet of heated space; no modular homes shall be allowed; all homes shall have two-car side entry garages standard.

2.      Underground utilities and streetlights shall be required.

3.      All homes shall be built of brick on all four sides.

4.      All yards shall be sodded to the rear drip lines of the homes.

5.      A future stub-out shall be provided in a location along the western property boundary, to increase the connectivity with surrounding residential communities.

6.      The applicant shall consult with Henry County DOT regarding     ingress/egress lanes and complied with subdivision access control.

7.      Sidewalks shall be provided on both sides of all streets interior to the development.

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to approve the resolution with amendments.  He said in condition #3, he would like to strike the word, “four,” and in condition #6, he added, at the end of the sentence, “and complied with subdivision access control.”  Commissioner Holman added condition #8 stating, “The development shall have a forty (40’) foot undisturbed buffer along the north property line of the out parcels on Fairview Road.  In areas where the land is devoid of natural buffer, the developer shall plant Evergreens as needed to maintain the dense screen.  Said buffer shall meet approval from the Plan Review Department.”  Commissioner Freedman seconded. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked if there was any opposition to this request; there was no response.

 

Mr. William Burton, who resides at 123 Eagles Club Drive, Stockbridge, said he represents TAS Properties, LLC.  He said as far as the condition added (#8), he did not have a problem with that.  He referenced condition #5 and said he had no idea what their intention is of having the stub out.  The property adjoining on the west side is flag lots/ residential.  Mr. Burton asked if condition #5 could be struck from the list of conditions. 

 

Commissioner Holman said he did not understand condition #5; he said currently there is a government building on that site (a fire station).  Commissioner Holman said there is no need to have a residential subdivision have interconnectivity with a fire station. 

 

Commissioner Freedman said he supported the idea of interconnectivity especially on Fairview Road.

 

Chairman Maddox asked how many houses are planned for this subdivision, and Mr. Burton said, “38.”  Chairman Maddox said for over a year he has been emphasizing the need for more than one entrance in a subdivision.  This one is only going to have 38 houses, but a stub out is requested.  Chairman Maddox could not understand the need.

 

Commissioner Freedman said Mr. Lunsford’s property has 175 homes with one entrance, and the Chairman did not have any problem with one entrance on that one.

 

Commissioner Harper stated, “thirty-eight (38) homes do not need a second entrance, but it stubs out into four (4) flag lots that you would have to go through to get access to Fairview Road, and assuming somehow these fifteen (15) homeowners that are contiguous, sold out to build a Winn-Dixie, who is going to want their neighborhood pouring into the back of the Winn-Dixie on the corner of Thurman and Fairview Roads?”

 

Commissioner Holman said he would like to strike condition #5 because he saw no need for it.  Commissioner Freedman amended his second.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Holman, Freedman, Harper, Holder, and Adams voting in favor.

 

 

The Meadows Group – RZ-04-40.

 

Commissioner Adams stated this was in his District but involves some family members; therefore, he recused himself and sat in the audience.

 

The Meadows Group, Inc. (RZ-04-40) has applied for a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to RM (Multi-Family Residential) to develop condominiums, for property consisting of 12.94 +/- acres and located at 71 Peach Drive, 3569 Jodeco Road, and 3545 Jodeco Road, in Land Lot 80 and 48 of the 6th District.  The Henry County Municipal Planning Commission reviewed and recommended approval of the request on September 9, 2004, with the following conditions:

 

1.      Each structure shall be constructed of brick, stone, stucco and/or combination thereof any type of masonry product.

2.      The property fronting Peach Drive and Jodeco shall have a minimum four-foot (4’) berm with various plantings.

3.      The net density shall not exceed 5.25 dwelling units per acre.

4.      The development shall have an onsite clubhouse, fitness center and outdoor swimming pool as the amenities package.

5.      All yards shall be fully sodded.

6.      No building permits will be issued until such time as sewer is available to the property.

7.      There shall be underground utilities.

 

Mr. Derrin Hutchinson, President of The Meadows Group, Inc., passed out their site plan to the Board Members.  He said the plan was unique and while on the face it looks like senior-housing, when “you look under the hood,” it is truly a unique concept that is being employed by approximately 100 developers across the Country. 

 

Mr. Kevin Phillips, a member of The Meadows Group, Inc., said 80% to 90% of the people who will occupy these homes will be seniors.  He said these individuals are here to build new revenue for the community without creating additional traffic or problems on municipalities.  Mr. Phillips showed a video of the concept of what The Meadows Group would like to build in Henry County. 

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to approve the resolution.  Commissioner Harper said the way the motion is written, it does not allow vinyl for the soffit or facia boards, which should be added to condition #1.  Condition #8 should be put as a caveat that they are improving the intersection of Peach Drive and Jodeco Road, and the development plans would be built so as not to conflict with the intersection improvement.   Commissioner Holman amended his motion to include Commissioner Harper’s additions, and asked in condition #1, to strike the word “stucco.” Commissioner Harper seconded. 

 

Mr. Phillips said it has been discussed the stucco only to be placed on the veranda. 

 

Commissioner Freedman stated “point of order” to complete the motion. 

 

Commissioner Harper asked Commissioner Holman if he would include the stucco in his motion for the veranda.  Commissioner Holman agreed.  The motion and the second were repeated.

 

Mr. Phillips said they also have a masonry product, Hardi-plank, that really transitions the product extremely well.  He said the veranda is actually the sunroom of the home, and he would like the option to have the Hardi-plank on the veranda. 

 

Commissioner Holman clarified the condition as follows:

 

1.      Each structure shall be constructed of brick, stone, or any combination thereof with the exception of the soffit and facia may be constructed of vinyl.  Hardi-plank may be used for the veranda or sunroom. 

 

Commissioner Freedman commended The Meadows Group for an excellent presentation and said the County needs senior-housing.  Referencing condition #3, Commissioner Freedman stated, to his knowledge, the Board has not allowed anything beyond four (4) units per acre in Henry County.  He said this is extraordinary for the Board to go above four (4) units per acre.  Allowing 5.25 units per acre is a quantum leap, and he said he had a problem with it.  He questioned the Planning Commission and this Board looking to approve such a drastic leap. 

 

Mr. Phillips responded the statistics come from actual home sales across twenty-two (22) states and the national average per car per household is 1.33; where on a single-family dwelling the average car per household is 2.5 cars per house. 

 

Commissioner Freedman asked if The Meadows Group was willing to make this a “senior only” community. 

 

Mr. Phillips answered, “no,” because that would limit the market.  The other 10% would be young professionals.

 

Commissioner Freedman asked if he was willing to make this 90% or 80% seniors.

 

Mr. Phillips answered, “no.”  He said 2% or 3% of actual condo homeowners have school aged children, and The Meadows Group does not want to limit the market and limit the opportunity of a young professional couple not to be able to live in the condominiums. 

 

Commissioner Freedman asked if anyone has asked The Meadows Group to contribute towards the traffic signal at Jodeco and Peach Drive. 

 

Commissioner Holman said he respected Commissioner Freedman’s observation.  He asked if four (4) dwelling units was pushing the envelope. 

 

Ms. Kimberly Smith, Planning and Zoning Director, stated the Planning Staff actually recommended denial due to the fact it is 1.25 dwelling units per acre over the 4.0 maximum.  She said the Planning Commission recommended approval with conditions.

 

Chairman Maddox asked if there was any opposition to this request; there was acknowledgement from the audience of opposition.

 

Mr. Damon Hudson, who is a Board Member of the Homeowners Association of Winslow of Eagles Landing, stated they are in strong opposition to above plan.  He said it will add additional traffic, and a projected senior living is a good plan, but with six-eight (68) dwellings (19 buildings), there will be at least an addition of one-hundred (100) cars.  This addition of cars will cause great impact at Peach Drive and Jodeco Road.  Mr. Hudson said they are not willing to make this a retirement community; therefore, there will be multiple car families. 

 

Mr. Hudson asked what connection does Commissioner Adams have with this company.

 

Mr. Hutchinson said, “Commissioner Adams is my wife’s uncle.”

 

Commissioner Adams stated he has no ownership in this company.

 

Mr. Hudson asked Commissioner Harper how the West Campground Extension will interact with this subdivision.

 

Commissioner Harper said, “at the present time, I do not know.   The last design shifts Peach Drive to a 90 degree, T-ing into Campground versus Jodeco.”

 

Mr. Hudson asked what assurance would the homeowners have that apartments would not be built in that location. 

 

Commissioner Harper said the resolution is approving condominiums at 5.25 units per acre (not apartments). 

 

Mr. Jaugstetter, County Attorney, said, “it is not inappropriate to put a condition saying each individual unit will be owned in fee simple by the unit owner, but you cannot prohibit one person from buying multiple units and renting those out.”

 

Mr. Hudson said the West Campground Road Extension was already a big problem to the neighborhood.  He said his house cost approximately $200,000, and after he moved in, he found out there was going to be a 4-lane highway in his back yard.  He thought it was incumbent upon the Commission to take the property values of the constituents into consideration when making decisions, because the existing residents will have to pass by this proposed subdivision to get to Jodeco Road. 

 

Ms. Annette Tomlin, who lives in Winslow Subdivision, thanked Commissioner Freedman for his support, and asked the Board to listen to the staff who have already denied it. 

 

Ms. Dena Seckinger, who lives at 140 Woodcrest Way, said her child attends Flippen Elementary and she has to contend with the traffic that already exists at Peach Drive and Jodeco Road.  She said she was very glad a light was in the plans to be installed at this location.  She addressed Commissioner Freedman and said she does not always agree with what he says, but he made some valid points on this issue tonight.  Ms. Seckinger said, “to make the statement there will be no additional traffic is an absurd comment.  Anyone who has an elderly relative that is in the age range that they are looking to market, is probably familiar with the fact elderly people like to start their day early, which is the same time I am taking my child to school.  They will be in the traffic flow; they cannot stay home until all of the kids are in school or adults are at work.    Also, I am very uncomfortable with the idea of raising the four (4) units per acre up to 5.25 units per acre; limits were put there for a reason.  There is a reason for the infrastructure (the sewer system, the roads, the electricity draw and the water), and our infrastructure cannot handle an extended amount of growth.  One of the reasons my family chose to live in Henry County is the Commission has been vocal on their joy of growth, but their understanding that the infrastructure must be a consideration.  Our children, our families, our neighborhoods are all going to be impacted by this particular growth.  We have to allow people, who already have homes, to keep their property values up and keep their children in school buildings for their education.”

 

Commissioner Holman said the opposition has made some very good arguments about the density.  He said he wanted to amend his motion to reduce the density to 4.0 unit per acre.  There was no second to the motion.

 

Chairman Maddox asked the representatives from The Meadows Group if they were acceptable to reducing the density to 4.0.  The answer was, “no.”

 

Commissioner Harper said the reason he considered this request is 1) density is occurring around the cities and the County; that is where the density is being centered.  “Recently, the City of McDonough annexed in 200 acres (15 units per acre).  This will overwhelm the school system when construction starts.    Winslow at Eagles Landing sits within the City Limits of Stockbridge, but I doubt this Board would have allowed that high of density, most likely on Peach Drive, but it is there.  The problem with that is the property they are buying is either contiguous to the City Limits of Stockbridge, and if not, it is only separated by one building lot from the City of Stockbridge.  That means the City of Stockbridge can annex it in at fifteen (15) units per acre or twenty (20) units per acre and the problem with that is the County taxpayers still have to ‘foot’ the bill to pay for that intersection improvement.  We have to pay for the light; we have to suffer the traffic, and they grant the zoning decisions.  When they granted the zoning for Winslow at Eagles Landing, that threw an enormous amount of traffic on a County road.  2) The intersection improvement is coming to Peach Drive and something is coming to this piece of land eventually.  All of those tracts along Peach Drive will be developed in the future, and the intersection improvement is going to come to Peach Drive with turn lanes.”

 

Commissioner Freedman asked Mr. Phillips if he was willing to table this issue to reconsider the density, making it a Senior Community, and contributing to the traffic signal.

 

Chairman Maddox said if this Board votes on this and turns it down, this cannot be brought before the Board again until twelve (12) months have passed. 

 

The applicant said he would like for the Board to vote on it.

 

Commissioner Freedman thought there could be a compromise in the works.

 

The applicant said he would agree to table this for thirty (30) days. 

 

Commissioner Freedman advised Mr. Phillips to have a town hall meeting to discuss the issue and reach a compromise, if possible. 

 

Commissioner Holman withdrew his motion; Commissioner Harper withdrew his second.  Commissioner Holman made a subsequent motion to table for thirty (30) days; Commissioner Harper seconded. 

 

Mr. Joe Kelly, who lives at 206 Harold Drive, stated he had great concerns regarding the traffic.  He said he has been living in this location for a long time and his property is adjacent to the proposed project, and he saw no problem in this development being constructed.  Mr. Kelly said the Board of Commissioners voted that there would no entry from Winslow on Peach Drive.  Now they have their entry, and this impacts Mr. Kelly and his neighbors on Harold Drive. 

 

Commissioner Freedman stopped Mr. Kelly for a moment to advise him that was annexed into Stockbridge, and the County lost control.

 

Chairman Maddox asked for a vote; the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Holder, and Freedman voting in favor (Commissioner Adams recused.).

 

 

EMERGENCY SPLOST ITEMS:

 

There were no Emergency SPLOST items.

 

 

AGENDA AMENDMENTS / EMERGENCY AGENDA ITEMS:

 

Commissioner Harper made the motion to approve the resolution formally changing the pay grade of the Sheriff’s Department Jailers to a pay grade 14 with a range proportionate with that grade, and authorize the Chairman to sign the resolution; Commissioner Holman seconded.  The resolution is written as follows:

 

WHEREAS, the Sheriff has requested the Pay Compensation Plan be amended to reflect that Non-Certified Jailers’ entry level salary be equal to Non-Certified Police Officers (Grade 14 at $29,557.48); and

 

WHEREAS, Sheriff Chaffin contends that former Board authorization was given and practice implemented in the past to hire Jailers at the same salary as Non-Certified Police Officers; and

 

WHEREAS, officially changing the Jailer position to a Grade 14 will be the solution to the appropriate starting salary; and

 

WHEREAS, Sheriff Chaffin indicated his only request is to correct the Non-Certified Jailer entry level salary (he is not requesting increases in any other position salaries), this will affect the current salary of about fourteen (14) Jailers and,

 

WHEREAS, the difference in the fourteen Jailers current salaries and the proposed starting level of Grade 14 is approximately $63.00 each, this amendment can be implemented at a minimal cost;

 

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED the Henry County Board of Commissioners, by adoption of this resolution, changes the Pay Grade of Non-Certified Jailers to a Grade 14 and formally implements the pay compensation to begin at the minimum starting salary of that grade range.

 

The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman, Holder, and Adams voting in favor.

 

 

COMMISSIONER(S) COMMENTS:

 

Commissioner Freedman said, “in some subsequent meeting, I am going to ask the County Manager to draw up a resolution that says we move our Monday BOC Meetings, which are held at 9:00 a.m., to 4:00 p.m.   I am getting concerns from people who are saying we are holding daytime meetings when they cannot get here.  Our workshops used to be held at 4:00 p.m. and people were able to come and see the business of the County.  I am asking we go back to that, and I am asking the Board to think about this.   Also, I would like to see our Commission Meetings back to 7:30 p.m. from 6:30 p.m. because it is hard for people to get here.”

 

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to approve the October 4, 2004 Board of Commissioners Minutes and the October 13, 2004 Board of Commissioners and Board of Education Joint Meeting Minutes; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Holman, Harper, Freedman, Holder, and Adams voting in favor.

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to approve the October 5, 2004 Board of Commissioners Minutes; Commissioner Freedman said there was one change.  On page 2 of 13 at the bottom it says, “Commissioner Freedman stated they were confronted when adding the sidewalk,” and it should state, “Commissioner Freedman stated they were concerned when adding the sidewalk.”   Commissioner Harper seconded; the motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman, Adams, and Holder voting in favor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UPCOMING MEETINGS:

 

10/21/04          Thursday          7:00 p.m.          Henry County Municipal Association

                                                                        Meeting to be held in the Locust Grove

                                                                        Community Room.

 

11/01/04          Monday           9:00 a.m.          Regular BOC Meeting

 

11/02/04          Tuesday           9:00 a.m.          Regular BOC Meeting

 

11/02/04          Tuesday                                   ELECTION DAY

 

11/09/04          Tuesday           6:00 p.m.          Called BOC Meeting along with the

                                                                        Planning Commission and the Steering

                                                                        Committee to discuss the Comprehensive

                                                                        Plan.

 

11/15/04          Monday           9:00 a.m.          Regular BOC Meeting

 

11/16/04          Tuesday           6:30 p.m.          Regular BOC Meeting

 

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to adjourn; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman, Holder, and Adams voting in favor.

 

                                                                        Leland Maddox, Chairman

 

Peggy L. Malcolm, Deputy County Clerk