STATE OF GEORGIA

 

 

COUNTY OF HENRY           

 

 

 

The Henry County Board of Commissioners held a Regular Meeting at 9:00 A.M. on Monday, July 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 T. Harper, District III Commissioner

                        Gerry Adams, District IV Commissioner (not present)

 

Also attending were Linda Angus, County Manager; Patrick Jaugstetter, County Attorney; Susan B. Craig, County Clerk; Shay Mathis, Deputy County Clerk; LaTonya Wiley, Deputy County Attorney; Rob Magnaghi, Deputy County Manager & Public Safety Division Director; Danny Taylor, Economic Development Division Director; Michael Harris, Public Works Division Director; and others.

 

Chairman Maddox called the meeting to order and asked for an Acceptance of the Agenda.  

 

            Commissioner Holman made a motion to approve the agenda, with the following amendments (additions) under Item XIV:

 

1.                  Request by the Tax Commissioner for funding for internet enabling of the property tax payments system.

 

2.                  Resolution to allocate all pooled expenses located in the unallocated department in the General Fund

 

3.                  Resolution to approve a bid proposal for construction of the Locust Grove Library

 

4.                  Resolution directing the Henry County Transportation Department to install additional stop signs at the intersection of Mitchell Road and McCullough Road

 

5.                  Resolution to authorize the addition of two new large patching crews, two pothole crews and a chip seal crew within the Department of Transportation

 

6.                  Appointment to Tax Assessors Board (tabled by BOC 7/6/04)

 

7.                  Approval of the Minutes for June 14, 2004 (Regular Meeting); June 29, 2004 (Called Meeting); July 6, 2004 (Regular Meeting); and July 14, 2004 (Called Meeting) -  (NOTE:  This replaces the contents of Item XVIII on the agenda).  Correction to previously approved minutes for the June 15, 2004, meeting.

 

Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion passed by a vote of 4-0, with Commissioners Holder, Freedman, Harper and Holman in favor.

 

 

PUBLIC HEARING:  MILLAGE RATE.

 

Mr. Andy Pipkin, Tax Commissioner, stated the purpose of hearings on the millage rate is former Governor Barnes decided that whenever we have a re-evaluation on property, that either by the same percent of the re-evaluation, the millage rate has to be lowered or three (3) public hearings have to be held stating why the money is needed and why the millage rate should either remain the same or not be rolled back.  He said re-evaluation is all we are concerned with; growth is something that is going to happen and growth, which results any time you add on to a house or install a swimming pool, any addition/improvements to the property.  Mr. Pipkin said re-evaluation would be when Tax Assessors have you valued at “X” amount of dollars and it is raised because the fair market value has gone up. 

 

Mr. Pipkin said the unincorporated area is all property in Henry County not located in one of the four (4) cities.  He said we have a millage rate of 11.24, which was the millage rate last year.  The Water Authority bonding company sends Mr. Pipkin a letter every year stating they cannot roll back their millage rate because it takes the two mills to pay those bonds off.  He stated regarding the hospital, we separate that out; it could be considered part of the County’s millage rate. 

 

Mr. Pipkin said, referencing the five-year history which is in the paper, we go with the unincorporated area first and then with the four (4) cities in alphabetical order (Hampton, Locust Grove, McDonough, and Stockbridge).  He said on property tax, we will be collecting a little over $51,000,000 this year; that is $4,168,658 more than last year, which is a percent increase of 8.89%. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked the public if they had any questions.

 

Mr. Wade Everett, of 1141 Turner Church Road, McDonough, Georgia, said in 2001 his taxes were $177,900 and he appealed it.  He said it was frozen for three (3) years, and this year he was penalized for appealing it, and his taxes are now $208,800.  He asked why his taxes went up $30,900 because of the appeal back in 2001.

 

Chairman Maddox said this comes through the Tax Assessors Office.  He said the only thing he could think of was if they froze Mr. Everett’s taxes for three (3) years, over those three (3) years his appraisal had gone up. 

 

Mr. Everett said the property around him did not go up like that.  He said when you appeal your taxes, you get red-flagged (penalized).  He asked why the Commissioners allow these people to do anything they want to, and when you try to rectify the situation, you get red-flagged.  He said all he could do was hire an attorney.  Mr. Everett said he is 68 years old, on a fixed income, and retired in 1991, and stated it was up to the Board of Commissioners to look after the people who elected them. 

 

Commissioner Holder said he would like to give a quick review of what the Commissioners have to do with the Tax Assessors.  The Tax Assessors and the Chief Appraiser actually work with the State Revenue Commission, so the Commissioners cannot go in and raise or lower taxes.  By law, the Board of Commissioners does not run the Tax Assessors Office.  The only thing the Board of Commissioners has to do with taxes is (with the Tax Commissioner who collects the taxes) set the millage based on the evaluations of the Tax Assessors’ value of the property based on various criteria.  The Commissioners look at the budget and what it will take to run the County, and then Mr. Pipkin collects the taxes.   Commissioner Holder advised Mr. Everett he is receiving a break because he is over 65 years of age. 

 

Mr. Everett agreed he was receiving a break, but stated every time he gets a break, they go up on his property to get it back.   Mr. Everett stated he does not have a college education, but he knows what is going on.

 

Commissioner Freedman advised Mr. Everett that 65% of the property tax goes to the School Board, two mills go to the Water Authority for bond debt servicing by law, and one mill goes to the hospital for indigent care.  He said out of $1,000, we receive $300, and that does not pay one policeman’s wages for one week, much less roads, police, fire, library, parks, senior services and all the things we do.  Commissioner Freedman said on the November ballot, there will be a resolution to freeze property taxes. 

 

Commissioner Holman said he himself was a victim of fair market value; his property went up $40,000.  Looking at a tax bill, Commissioner Holman said the fair market value of the example property is $49,000 and the sales price is $70,000.  He explained the fair market value is on the low side; it should at least be $70,000 because that is what it sold for. 

 

Mr. Pipkin announced there would be another meeting today at 4:00 P.M. and then the millage rate would be set directly after that meeting. 

 

 

PUBLIC HEARING:  POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS DOG HEARING.

 

Section 3-4-45.c of the Henry County Code of Ordinances provides for a hearing before the Animal Control Board when there has been a determination made by the Animal Control Department that a dog is potentially dangerous.  On March 11, 2004, Ms. Tiffany Love was informed in writing that her two (2) dogs had been found potentially dangerous, and Ms. Love requested a hearing before the Animal Control Board. 

 

Mr. Charlie Tomlinson, Code Enforcement and Animal Control Director, said he would give some background on this case.  He said the Animal Control Department received a complaint on March 2, 2004, where Ms. Trigg had been attacked by a dog.  This incident, as reported by Ms. Trigg, happened on Deerwood Drive, Stockbridge, Ga.  According to her report, she was walking her small dog on a leash when two (2) large unrestrained dogs suddenly attacked her small dog.  Ms. Trigg reported while she attempted to rescue her dog, one (1) of the dogs attacked her.  She was not sure which dog attacked her, so both dogs had to be picked up and quarantined.  It was found Ms. Love, the owner of the two (2) dogs who lived in the area (777 Deerwood Drive), had her dogs vaccinated (in another state) which met the State requirements.  Animal Control issued a citation for Ms. Love to appear in the Magistrate Court, where Ms. Love entered a plea of nolo contendere.  The Judge accepted that and a fine was imposed of $315 which included the fine and court cost.  After the quarantine period, Ms. Love took her dogs back, and at a later date, brought one of the dogs back to Animal Control to be euthanized, because she could not control the animal.  Since that time, Ms. Love has indicated she no longer lives in Henry County.  Her address is Lemon Avenue, Walnut, California, but Mr. Trigg says she is still residing in the area.  We have had no further problems or reports regarding the dogs, but Mr. Tomlinson said the hearing date was rescheduled because of the busy schedules of the people involved.  Mr. Tomlinson stated this is why we are here today.

 

Commissioner Harper made a motion to declare the dogs named Shanouk and Nacolbia potentially dangerous dogs under the Henry County Animal Control Ordinance and have Animal Control to issue the proper notices; Commissioner Holman seconded. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked if anyone from Animal Control had visited the Love’s to see if they still lived there.

 

Ms. Cathy Hewitt, Animal Control Supervisor, stated one officer had been to the location, and Ms. Love’s mother or parent lives at the location.  She said what was told to the officer was Ms. Love travels and resides predominantly in California, but does spend time visiting her parents.  When she visits, the dogs stay at this location. 

 

Mr. Trigg said when the incident happened, he tried to make contact with Ms. Love.  He stated when mail is sent to the California address, it is rerouted back to the Deerwood Drive address.  Mr. Trigg said Ms. Love has been at this address since November, 2003, and her car has been parked outside that home since November. 

 

Ms. Trigg stated besides killing their dog, Ms. Love’s dog has also killed a neighbor’s dog. 

 

Ms. Victoria Flom, who lives at 797 Deerwood Drive, stated the dogs initially attacked her four (4) dogs first.  At that time, Ms. Love put up a fence, but the attacks continued.  Ms. Flom said these dogs are Rodesian Razorbacks; they are bred to attack lions and they have no fear of humans.  She said one of the dogs picked up her Jack Russell and shook it like a rag doll, and the dog is still there at the location. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked Mr. Tomlinson what was the procedure now.

 

Mr. Tomlinson said the fact the dog has been classified “potentially dangerous,” the owner of the dog would have to register the dog, pay an annual fee ($100), install a fence, and post the property as “dangerous dog.”  He said he would have to check the code to see if the owner would have to post a bond ($15,000 surety bond).   He said, at this point, we cannot impound the dog(s) unless the ordinance is violated. 

 

The motion was voted on and carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Holman and Freedman voting in favor.

 

 

MODIFICATION TO A CONDITION OF ZONING:

 

Hudgins Communities, Inc. – MC-02-04.

 

Hudgins Communities (MC-02-04) has applied for a modification to a zoning condition for property located on along the south side of Brannan Road, known as Carlyle @ Rockport Subdivision in Land Lot 3 of the 7th District.  The Henry County Municipal Planning Commission reviewed and recommended approval of the request with the following conditions:

 

1.      A revised final plat shall be submitted to the Department Plan Review for approval removing all references to the walking/jogging trail.

2.      Condition #5, approved with the rezoning request on December 17, 1996, is removed as a condition of rezoning.

3.      All homeowners affected by the removal of the walking/jogging trail are provided a new final plat, by the developer, at no expense, removing the walking/jogging trail.

 

 

 

Commissioner Harper made a motion to accept the modification to a zoning condition and added one (1) provision as follows:

 

“WHEREAS, the Henry County Board of Commissioners is approving this resolution in reliance on Hudgins Communities’ commitment to pay for the Carlyle Homeowners Association the sum of $23,180.00;” Commissioner Holman seconded. 

 

Ms. Loretta Petty, President of the Homeowners Association, stated the residents in the Carlyle did vote to accept the amount Hudgins Communities had offered in lieu of the walking trail, and said there is no opposition to that.  She said, “we have agreed as a subdivision to go ahead and take this settlement.” 

 

Commissioner Freedman said he had received two (2) phone calls from residents of the Carlyle who said they did not agree with this.

 

Ms. Petty stated they must have been absent from the meeting called when the Association voted; she said, “we had an advertised meeting and the quorum was there, and the vote was taken by the Association and it did pass.” 

 

Commissioner Harper said the original amount was $21,000, and this was tabled to see if we could do any better.  He said Mr. Hudgins committed to him to pay $2,000 more and that brought it to $23,180. 

 

Ms. Petty said the check would be forthcoming within five (5) days of the approval.  She stated she did not want to get into a “waiting game” with Mr. Hudgins where it would take six (6) or eight (8) months before they received the check.

 

Commissioner Harper amended the motion to add immediately after $23,180 “payable within five (5) days of passage of the resolution.”  Commissioner Holman amended his second.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman, Freedman and Harper voting in favor. 

 

 

REZONING:

 

Shiraz Aly – RZ-04-20.

 

Shiraz Aly (RZ-04-20) has applied for a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to C-2 (General Commercial) to permit the development of a convenience store and gas station, for properties located at 3324 Highway 81 and 55 South Ola Road, Lot 145 of the 7th District.  The Henry County Municipal Planning Commission reviewed and recommended approval of the request with the following conditions:

 

1.      The two subject properties shall be combined into one lot and recorded as a single parcel, prior to the submittal of plans to the Development Plan Review Department.

2.      Construction of a fence no more than eight feet (8’) in height on sides that directly abut residential land uses (in addition to forty-foot (40’) buffer requirement).

3.      All sides of the building(s) shall be constructed of brick, stucco, glass, stone or any combination thereof.

4.      Development Plan Review Department staff shall approve the proposed landscape plans prior to the issuance of a building permit.

5.      An exterior lighting plan shall require all lighting to be of moderate brightness and consist of downcast lighting.

6.      Dumpster(s) shall be placed on a concrete pad and enclosed on three sides.  The enclosure shall be constructed of brick, stone, stucco or any combination thereof provided it is consistent with the primary structure, and shall not exceed eight feet (8’) in height.

7.      The primary ground signage shall consist of a monument-based sign, constructed of brick, stucco, stone or any combination thereof, and shall not exceed fifteen feet (15’) in height.

8.      Development Plan Review staff shall approve the architectural character of all proposed buildings.

 

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

 

Commissioner Holder made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Harper seconded. 

 

Commissioner Holder said the only concern he had was the site distance on Highway 81 at that corner, and noted the State DOT will determine if there is proper amount of site distance on this particular piece of property. 

 

Commissioner Holman stated when an applicant comes before this Board and asks for a curb cut accel/decel lane for commercial property, when this Board grants that zoning subject to the State, we are doing this backwards.  He said we should ask the applicant to communicate with the State and the State could say “you do not have a site distance; we recommend you, the governing authority, not grant the change in the use.”  He said what happens now, when we grant this rezoning change, we have now told the State, by our action, that they do not have anywhere to go because they cannot deny that applicant access to their property.

 

Chairman Maddox said we cannot tell the State where to make an accel/decel lane. 

 

Commissioner Harper ‘called the question;’ Commissioner Holman seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman and Holder voting in favor.

 

The Chairman asked for the vote on the resolution; the motion carried 3-1-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder and Freedman voting in favor, and Commissioner Holman voting against.

 

 

The Sembler Company of Atlanta – RZ-04-21.

 

The Sembler Company of Atlanta, Georgia, requests a rezoning from RA (Residential Agricultural) to C-3 (Heavy Commercial) for property located on the western side of Mill Road and south of Jonesboro Road, in Land Lot 110 of the 6th District.  The property consists of 22.61 +/- acres, and the request is to develop a retail shopping plaza.  The Henry County Municipal Planning Commission reviewed and recommended approval for C-3 (Heavy Commercial) with the following conditions:

 

(1)   All four sides of the building shall be constructed of brick, stone, stucco/EIFS, glass or any combination thereof and shall reflect the overall design features of the surrounding buildings.  The Planning and Zoning Department and the Board of Commissioners shall have architectural review of the plans.  Prefabricated buildings are discouraged.  If the rear of the building does not face a street or parking lot, then painted concrete block may be used on the rear of the building.

 

(2)   There shall be a Master Sign Development Plan reviewed and approved by the Henry County Board of Commissioners.  All signs shall have a consistent character and design details (such as trellis, brick, river stone, etc.) that reflect the design of the project. 

 

(3)   An exterior lighting plan shall require that all lighting be of moderate brightness and consist of downcast lighting.

 

(4)   Dumpster(s) which are facing public streets shall be placed on a concrete pad and enclosed on three (3) sides. The enclosure shall be constructed of brick, stone, stucco or any combination thereof provided it is consistent with the primary structure, and shall be a minimum of eight (8’) feet in height.

 

(5)   The developer shall install sidewalks along the entire frontage of the property and sidewalks should also be installed internal to the development, which will connect the out parcels to the anchor tenant.

 

(6)   A detailed landscape plan shall be submitted that shall exceed the minimum requirements of the ordinance to include heavy landscaping throughout the entire 22.61+/- acre site. All parking rows shall have a minimum of three (3) landscape isles. The Development Plan Review Department shall have final approval of the plan prior to any issuance of a certificate of occupancy.

 

(7)   Detention facilities shall be screened via heavy landscaping along the perimeter of the pond, the details of which shall be included as part of the landscape plan.

 

 

Chairman Maddox asked if there was any opposition to this request; there was no response.   He said there was no one present representing The Sembler Company and did not know if it should be approved at this point, since the Board would probably have some questions.

 

Mr. Patrick Jaugstetter, County Attorney, said the Board could either vote on or table the resolution. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked the County Attorney if conditions could be added to the existing seven (7) conditions even though The Sembler Company did not have a representative present.

 

Mr. Jaugstetter said the Board did not need the consent of The Sembler Company to add conditions.

 

Commissioner Freedman made a motion to table the rezoning request until later in the meeting pending the arrival of a representative from the Company; Commissioner Holman seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Harper, Holder and Holman voting in favor.

 

 

MR. CHARLES COLE, REGIONAL MANAGER FOR TITLEMAX, REQUEST TO APPEAR BEFORE THE BOARD REGARDING THE DENIAL OF A BUSINESS LICENSE.

 

            TitleMax submitted an application for a business license on April 12, 2004 and was denied a license and is requesting to appeal this denial.

 

Mr. Jaugstetter stated TitleMax applied for a license to operate as a pawn shop in Henry County.  The application was denied because the County’s Ordinance requires the owner or shareholder to be a resident of Henry County.  He said what the Board needs to do is make a decision today on either to grant the license (despite the provision in the standing Ordinance), or uphold the denial of the permit in which the Ordinances’ constitutionality may possibly be tested by the applicant.

 

Mr. Michael Cross, attorney representing the applicant, said he was present to ask for permission as a whole to approve the license.  He said rather than focusing on the unconstitutionality of the statute, he wanted Mr. Cole to come forth and speak on the Company.

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to grant TitleMax the business license and to direct staff to amend the Code; Commissioner Harper seconded.

 

Mr. Charles Cole, Regional Manager for TitleMax, said he wanted to inform the Board a little about their business.

 

Commissioner Harper said the Board had a very full Agenda and ‘called the question;’ Commissioner Holman seconded. 

 

Commissioner Freedman said we have an Ordinance and the Board should stick to it.  If the Board wants to change the Ordinance, we should do it; do not make an exception and then change the Ordinance.  He said the Board was doing this backwards. 

 

Commissioner Holder stated he concurred with the motion on the floor, because he thought this was an oversight; he said this is something the Board needs to address, but not something that we need to defend in the form that it’s in today.

 

The vote was taken on ‘calling the question;’ the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Freedman and Holman voting in favor.

 

The vote was taken on the motion to issue TitleMax a business license and to have our County Attorney to amend the Code; the motion carried 3-1-0 with Commissioners Holder, Harper and Holman voting in favor and Commissioner Freedman voting against. 

 

 

MS. CHRIS ROGERS REQUESTS TO APPEAR BEFORE THE BOARD REGARDING ESTABLISHING A SCENIC ROAD ORDINANCE IN HENRY COUNTY.

 

Ms. Christine Rogers is a citizen of the County and is very involved in preserving our natural environment.  Ms. Rogers would like to address the Board regarding establishing a Scenic Road Ordinance.

 

Ms. Rogers said she resides at 1171 Turner Church Road and stated each of the Board Members has, at some time, voiced a concern or support for our history, heritage, and environment.  She addressed an example in their notebooks of an ordinance that would establish conditions and processes for preserving or designating certain roads as official Henry County scenic roads.  She said it offers the purpose, authority, standards and procedures for establishing scenic roads in the County.  She said there are still some beautiful old country dirt roads and they are pictures of our past; they are free of pollution, congestion and traffic.  She said they offer a quiet journey with canopies of mature trees, clean brooks, scenic views, and abundant wildlife.  Ms. Rogers said scenic roads and what they have to offer every season of the year are irreplaceable resources.  She said this Scenic Road Ordinance is non-partisan; it does not favor one District over another, and each District can offer its own unique gift.  A Scenic Road Ordinance is environmentally friendly, it preserves our past, while benefiting present and future generations.  There are no construction costs, no plat reviews, no engineering fees, and very little maintenance. 

 

Commissioner Harper made the following motion:

 

WHEREAS, Henry County is currently in the process of adopting a new Comprehensive Land Use Plan, as well as corresponding Ordinances, and,

 

WHEREAS, Henry County’s citizens have requested the adoption of a Scenic Road Ordinance, and,

 

WHEREAS, the Board of Commissioners direct for the staff and committee responsible for rewriting the Land Use Plan and Ordinances to include a provision providing for a scenic road designation.

 

NOW, THEREFORE, STAFF IS DIRECTED to include a scenic road designation in the Ordinance drafts currently being prepared for presentation to this Board.

 

Commissioner Freedman seconded; the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Freedman, Holman and Holder voting in favor.

 

Mr. Danny Taylor, Economic Development Division Director, said Ms. Rogers would like for it to be considered in advance of the Comprehensive Plan and the Unified Land Development Code, and said staff could accommodate her if that is the Board’s wish.

 

Chairman Maddox directed his response to Mr. Taylor and said if it is brought before the Board, it will be considered. 

 

 

MR. HOKE THOMAS REQUEST TO APPEAR BEFORE THE BOARD REGARDING SOUTH RIVER AT SNAPPING SHOALS.

 

Mr. Hoke Thomas is a representative of Thomas Brothers Hydro, Inc. and would like to address the Board regarding their permit to withdraw and filter 30 mgd of water from the South River at Snapping Shoals, Georgia. 

 

Mr. Thomas stated he was from Snapping Shoals located at Highways 212 and 81 in Newton County, and said their dam extends across the river to Henry County.  He said his purpose is his company, Thomas Brothers Hydro, Inc., has applied for a 30 million gallon a day withdrawal permit from the State EPD for the purpose of filtration for water distribution.  He said the State EPD suggested he visit each of the six (6) surrounding counties and the County Commissioner Boards and explain the proposal.  The six (6) counties are Newton, Rockdale, Henry, Jasper, Walton and Butts, who are ranked among the fastest growing industrial and residential counties in the State of Georgia.

 

Mr. Thomas said 30 mgd is enough water to supply all six (6) of the counties with water.  He said they began their permit application about the same time Henry County began constructing the Tussahaw Creek Reservoir.  Mr. Thomas said as the counties grow, his source of water will be very valuable and it will be needed.  The Northeast Georgia Water Council and the State EPD have plans of tying this area’s water system together, just like the power companies have done with the electrical systems to form a grid.  So when the demand exceeds the supply, the water will always be there.  This would mean we would take water from one river basin, use it, and discharge it into another river basin.  Mr. Thomas said that is exactly what is happening at his place; that is, the main item that his permit is predicated upon – the innovation transfer of water which totally eliminates the need for a reservoir.  He said 30 mgd of available rural water can be withdrawn from Snapping Shoals 24-hours a day, 365-days a year without any adverse effect on downstream ecology, existing permits, or dry weather conditions.  More than 30 mgd of rural water is being introduced into the South River 27-1/2 miles upstream from Snapping Shoals via interface transfer from the Chattahoochee River.  This water will continue to increase.  The Federal Courts have made a decision between the lawsuit that Alabama has brought against Georgia in reference to the City of Atlanta’s withdrawal from Lake Lanier and the Chattahoochee River, saying they will not establish a water use formula for the states.  Therefore, the permits in Atlanta stand existing conditions, the interface transfer is real, and the EPD has made a ruling that interface and transfer now will be permitted and be regulated.  Therefore, the water will always be in the South River; this is extra water above the natural flow in the river.  Mr. Thomas stated a 30 mgd ultra-filtration plant can be constructed at Snapping Shoals, and the potable water can be distributed to the six (6) surrounding counties using much of the existing infrastructure and piping already in the ground.  Mr. Thomas said his facility is located where Henry County’s eight (8”) inch line ties to Newton County’s eight (8”) inch line.  Also he said they are located 1.3 miles from Henry County’s main sixteen (16”) inch line, and 6 miles from Newton County’s twenty-four (24”) inch main line.  The yield of the proposed filtration plant has been designed at 30 mgd, and since 30 mgd of rolled water is always available from the river, no reservoir is needed.  The development of Snapping Shoals as a rolled water withdrawal and filtration plant will be the single most important issue each of the six (6) counties will have to contemplate.  Mr. Thomas stated they had estimated the cost of construction and the cost of the potable water to the citizens of this County (at yield capacity) is $.75 per 1,000 gallons. 

 

Commissioner Harper said water is like air; it is a natural resource that belongs to the public, not to a private entity.  He said if you take 30,000,000 gallons out of the South River and then 50 miles down stream somebody else draws another 30,000,000, all of the water will suddenly end up in the hands of private citizens drawing it in their private plants.   He said then suddenly we are going to be subject to the whims of having to pay them for our water.

 

Mr. Thomas said he had no intentions of developing this as a private entity.  He said he wanted the counties to benefit from this; he is giving his permit and water rights.

 

Chairman Maddox asked Mr. Thomas if he had talked to any other counties.

 

Mr. Thomas said he had.  He stated EPD has had him make these presentations to all six (6) counties in order to obtain the permit. 

 

Commissioner Holder said this is an alternative source, and there is no river flowing through Georgia (in and out of Georgia), and we are going to have to recycle or do something.  He said Mr. Thomas wants to sell this to some joint venture between counties, and then they can resell to other counties in need.  Commissioner Holder said this was a good thing, and as far as this Board is concerned, he endorsed it and wanted to forward it to the Water Authority.

 

Commissioner Freedman said he had not seen any staff recommendation on this, and hoped Mr. Thomas did not expect a decision to be made today.   Mr. Thomas recommended the Board to take their time. 

 

Commissioner Holman asked for the value of the permit.

 

Mr. Thomas responded the permit alone was $800,000.00.  He said he had a lot of money invested; there were six (6) or eight (8) people (two with Ph.D’s) that did work on this, and BP Barber & Consultants out of Greenville, South Carolina did the preliminary study. 

 

Mr. Thomas said his next step was to make an appointment with the Water Authority for their review.

 

 

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT:

 

An Ordinance To Revise Chapter 3-6, Article III, Of The Code Of Henry County, Georgia, Entitled “Soil Erosion And Sedimentation Control.”

 

 

This is an Ordinance for the purpose of revising Chapter 3-6, Article III of the Code of Henry County, Georgia, adopted May 1, 1984, as amended, entitled “Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control,” for the purpose of adopting the recent changes made to the Erosion and Sedimentation Act of 1975, Official Code of Georgia Annotated, 12-7-1 et.seq, as required.  Erosion and sedimentation are recurring issues related to land disturbance and require regulation.  Henry County is currently a Local Issuing Authority, as defined by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources Environmental Protection Division, which requires adoption of a local erosion and sedimentation control ordinance in order to issue and enforce land disturbance permits at the local level.  Henry County currently has a Memorandum of Agreement with the Henry County Soil and Water Conservation District allowing in-house review of erosion and sedimentation control plans in order to expedite the permitting process.  The revisions would be more protective of natural resources and benefit the citizens of Henry County.

 

Mr. Jeret Elwell, Department of Plan Review, stated the State has requested us to adopt the revisions they made to the State Erosion and Sedimentation Act of 1975.  Henry County had twelve (12) months to do so, or by July 1, 2004.  Mr. Elwell said he has asked for a 30-day extension.  He said, at the County level, we have requested to be a little more stringent in a couple of areas. 

 

Commissioner Holder said he has found one that is totally unreasonable, namely, “increasing the time of correction of all violations from five (5) days to one (1) business day.”  He said if there is a serious violation, how could it be corrected in one day?  He asked what could be accomplished when a one (1) day window is allowed? 

 

Referencing page 114, Commissioner Freedman stated the authority is there to issue a stop work order, and if the land disturbance is continuing and there is a violation, the key is they stop the land disturbance until the violation is fixed.  If there is something going on and they are creating a pollution problem or sedimentation problem, they should not be allowed to continue.  Commissioner Freedman said the key to that is they can stop the land disturbance operations if there is a violation, and it has to be a danger to the water source or things like that.  Commissioner Freedman questioned why fourteen (14) days are allowed for completion where mulch and temporary vegetation are exposed after the disturbance.  He said that is too long; once land disturbance occurs, sedimentation could go into our water supply and fourteen (14) days should not be allowed.   He said he would like to see this reduced; there is a lot of damage that could be done in fourteen (14) days.

 

Mr. Taylor said regarding Mr. Holder’s concern, he totally agreed with him and stated we should go with five (5) days on that.  Mr. Taylor said he would like for the Board to amend that portion now. 

 

Mr. Steve Schafer, Development Plan Review Director, stated during the first inspection a warning is given, and if correction is not made, then a 24-hour notice is issued for the violation.  He said if nothing is done after the second warning, then what is stated here would immediately go into effect.  In essence, they would have three (3) days. 

 

Referencing the 14-day issue of Commissioner Freedman, Mr. Schafer stated this is what the State has always had.  If property is disturbed and nothing is being done to correct the problem, the State allows fourteen (14) days to reseed the grass. 

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to move an Ordinance to revise Chapter 3-6, Article III of the Code of Henry County Georgia, entitled “Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control” for the purpose of adopting all changes resulting from House Bill 285 amending the Erosion and Sedimentation Act of 1975, O.C.G.A. 12-7-1 as written.  Commissioner Harper seconded for discussion. 

 

Commissioner Holder said as many SPLOST projects as we have going on, the Board of Education is building schools as fast as they can build them, and the Water Authority is building sewer and water treatment plants as fast as they can build (which disturbs large areas of land).  He asked if these governmental agencies meet the requirements we are requiring each individual in this County to comply with?

 

Mr. Schafer said, “yes.”  He stated we do not necessarily inspect the SPLOST projects, but we do review their plans. 

 

Commissioner Holder asked who inspects the SPLOST projects.

 

Mr. Schafer answered they inspect their own projects, and they are inspected by a County Inspector. 

 

The vote was taken, and the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman, and Holder voting in favor.

 

 

Request Approval of a Resolution to Uphold the Decision of the Planning Administrator to Allow a Building Permit to be Issued for 3359 Jodeco Road.

 

The Henry County Board of Commissioners has received and reviewed appeals submitted by Mr. D. H. Arpiarian and Mr. Walter E. Mather, President, Heritage Ridge Homeowners Association, related to the planning administrator’s decision to allow a building permit to be issued for 3359 Jodeco Road.

 

Mr. Peter Olson, Attorney for Heritage Ridge Homeowners Association, Mr. Dick Arpiarian, and Mr. Walter Mather, said this is an appeal, not only for the issuance of the building permit, but also for the variance reducing the buffer between the commercial property and the adjacent residential from forty (40’) feet to twenty (20’) feet.   He stated the building permit was applied for in March, 2004 and was granted in June, 2004.  Mr. Olson said this issue was resolved by a memo from the County Attorney, Patrick Jaugstetter, stating the applicant had vested their rights under the prior 1986 zoning map that was readopted in 1999, which he interpreted as carrying it at C-2.  He said that is what they are asking the Board to clarify.  Mr. Olson said the zoning staff has brought the 1986/1999 original map, and it is their contention, at best, it is unclear.   He stated his clients do not believe the map shows that it is C-2, and is asking the Board to make the determination that it has always been residential, based on 1971 and in 1981 it was determined residential.  Mr. Olson asked how it changed? 

 

Commissioner Holman asked what the tax map showed.

 

Mr. Olson responded at times the tax map has carried it commercial.  He said what he is showing is a memorandum from the Planning and Zoning Department:

 

 

 

 

 

1971                                Residential

1981                                Residential

1984                                Tax map residential

1987                                Tax map commercial

1986                Zoning map – unclear

2003                                Zoning map – R-2,  Unofficial tax map – Residential

 

Mr. Olson said all the evidence shows it has never been rezoned commercial; there is no zoning file in the County’s records.  He said it has had a residence on it the entire time, until it was taken down for the development of the office.

 

Mr. Olson said when the development plan was approved, they allowed the buffer to drop from forty (40’) feet to twenty (20’) feet.  The Ordinance specifically says in a circumstance where commercial is abutting single-family residential, the minimum required buffer is forty (40’) feet, and in certain circumstances will require a wall.  The administrative variance provisions of the Ordinance only allow the staff to grant administrative variances for front, rear, and side setbacks.  They cannot grant a variance on buffer width.  There is a variance procedure that would take it to the Planning Commission, and they would have the authority to grant the variance, but the staff cannot reduce a minimum required forty (40’) feet to twenty (20’) feet.  Mr. Olson said if the Board upholds the building permit and allows the developer to go forward, “we request they would reverse the determination on the buffer variance.” 

 

Mr. Olson said the application indicated this was going to be an office, but now the plans involve a six (6) unit retail shopping center; neither is permissible under R-2.  He stated if the Board finds they vested their rights, they could only vest them for what they asked for prior to the zoning change; what they asked for was “office.”   The applicant did not ask for the retail shops until they filed their building permit in March, 2004. 

 

Mr. Andy Welch, Attorney who represented the property owner, Mrs. Brenda Robertson Short and BK Builders, stated he submitted a memorandum before the Board explaining the legal basis for answers to those issues and stating the Constitutional rights that should be preserved.  Based on the Henry County Code and Georgia Case Law, he said they have drawn a conclusion that the issuance of the building permit was indeed proper, and both appeals are untimely.  Regarding the appeal of the business license, the real substance of the appeal is not whether or not the building permit was properly issued, in accordance with the building guidelines, but whether the use of the property is proper.  The decision of the use was determined and finalized on January 7, 2004 when the development plans and development permit were issued.   Mr. Welch said our Ordinance states under Section 3-7-271 that an administrative appeal must be filed within 30-days of the decision; it must be in writing and must be given to the Planning Administrator.   He said the decision that is being appealed is the determination of staff as to whether or not this is a C-2 zoning.  That decision was first made when a business license was issued back in September, 2002, and then again made when the development plans were approved, so the determination has been made; the appeal was filed on June 10, 2004 (a 4-month delay); therefore, the appeal is outside the time required for a valid appeal.

 

Secondly, the reduction of the buffer was also made and finalized on the issuance of the development permit, which was January 7, 2004.  The appeal made on that issue was filed June 10, 2004; again there was a 4-month lapse.  Therefore, Mr. Welch stated the decisions on these matters would be arbitrary or capricious and recommended that not be done, but rather be dismissed. 

 

Regarding the property being zoned R-2, Mr. Welch said it is not zoned R-2 and cannot be zoned R-2 pursuant to an adoption of a zoning map on December 16, 2003.  Referencing the Minutes from that meeting, he stated the Minutes do not reflect that a public hearing was held.  Under an R zoning ordinance, for a valid rezoning to occur, a public hearing must be held.  He said if there was a change to the map, it was invalid, therefore reverting back to the former zoning.  The former zoning of the property, as manifested in the Official Zoning Map of 1986 and re-adopted in 1999 by this body, indicates the property is zoned C-2. 

 

Commissioner Holman asked for an explanation of Mr. Welch’s justification of the zoning map showing this property as R-2.

 

Mr. Taylor answered when a new zoning map was adopted on December 16th, it was adopted under the provision 3-7-33.  He read as follows:  “in the event that the official zoning map becomes damaged, destroyed, lost, or difficult to interpret because of the nature or number of changes in addition, the Board of Commissioners, may by Ordinance, adopt a new Official Zoning Map which shall supercede the prior Official Zoning Map.  The new Official Zoning Map may correct drafting or other errors or emissions in the prior Official Zoning Map.  But no such correction shall have the effect of amending the original Official Zoning Map.  This new map shall be identified by the signature of the Chairman and attested to by the County Clerk.”  Mr. Taylor said no amendment to that map was made; the R-2 classification or the designation of the property on the map adopted on December 16th is, in his opinion, in error as it is shown as R-2.

 

Mr. Olson said there was no evidence to show this property had been rezoned and that is why so many of the neighbors are frustrated.  Referencing the Henry County building permit routing sheet, the determination to move forward in granting this to C-2 was made on June 4, 2004.  He stated a letter of objection had already been sent on May 20th and additional ones on June 10th.  He said the point is the final determination was only made on June 4th, and if they are going to contend they had vested rights to C-2, going back to when they applied for their development permit, at that time they said it was C-1.  And when the development permit was issued, the zoning listed was C-1.  He said it was a puzzle where that came from.  In conclusion, after the December, 2003 zoning map was adopted, it clearly showed this property was R-2.  He said they want to vest their rights based on this ambiguity of whether or not this is C-2; there is no evidence this has ever been rezoned C-2; the staff stated it was unclear in the zoning memo and did not conclude it was appropriately zoned C-2.  Mr. Olson said the County Attorney was in the position to make the ‘call,’ and he did not think he made the right ‘call.’  We ask the Board to uphold the decision that it is residentially zoned, and the permits issued to the developer are void and have to be revoked. 

 

Chairman Maddox read the resolution and asked for a motion.

 

Commissioner Freedman made a motion to disapprove the resolution; there was no second to the motion. 

 

Commissioner Holder made a motion to approve the upholding of the Planning and Zoning staff; Commissioner Harper seconded. 

 

Commissioner Freedman stated nothing on the map points to this lot as being commercial; it is in violation of the Land Use Map.  He said they did not get the building permit until 2004, and in 2003 the Board passed the zoning map showing the property was residential and always has been residential.  Commissioner Freedman said if taken a step further by looking at the 2003 Land Use Plan, it is R-2.  He could not understand how anyone, in good conscience, could say this property was commercial.

 

Commissioner Holder asked how old Heritage Ridge Subdivision is. 

 

A lady in the audience answered, “the first house was built in 1985.”

 

Ms. Kimberly Smith, Planning and Zoning Director, stated the subdivision is zoned R-2. 

 

Commissioner Holder said someone had eluded to the fact this property had been assessed commercial property taxes and over the years has had both.  He asked if in 1985, when permits were issued for Heritage Ridge, was this particular piece of property interpreted to be commercial or residential.

 

Mr. Taylor said they had to rely on that map, and based on the recent examination, it was determined C-2.

 

Chairman Maddox asked for the vote to be taken; the motion carried 3-2-0 with Chairman Maddox, Commissioners Harper and Holder voting in favor and Commissioners Holman and Freedman voting against.

 

Chairman Maddox said the representative from The Sembler Company had arrived; therefore, this would be the next topic for discussion/action.

 

Chairman Maddox referenced item VI-B, The Sembler Company (RZ-04-21), and stated he had already read the resolution and the seven (7) conditions.  He asked Mr. Gil Saladay, representing The Sembler Company, if he agreed with the conditions.  Mr. Saladay answered, “yes.”

 

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

 

Commissioner Freedman stated he had some changes to the conditions.  Commissioner Freedman also said he wanted the record to reflect that Mr. Saladay did not give campaign donations to any Commissioner, but the President of The Sembler Company and his family did donate to Commissioner Freedman’s campaign. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked the County Attoney for his thoughts and legal advice on the campaign donations made by The Sembler Company to Commissioner Freedman.

 

Mr. Jaugstetter said it would be proper for The Sembler Company to submit an affidavit showing they did.  He said it would not exclude Commissioner Freedman from voting despite receiving the contribution. 

 

Commissioner Freedman said at the time they filled their campaign disclosure form out, they had not made any contributions toward his campaign. 

 

Commissioner Freedman referenced condition #1 and asked the following change to be made: Remove “The Planning and Zoning Department and the Board of Commissioners shall have architectural review of the plans,” and substitute “The Development Plan Review Department shall have final architectural approval of the plans.”  In condition #2, remove “Henry County Board of Commissioners,” and substitute “the Development Plan Review Department.”  In condition #6, Commissioner Freedman said, just like the shopping center that was developed previously, he wanted to add a tree every ten (10) parking spaces.  The second sentence would then read, “All parking rows shall have one (1) approved tree every ten (10) parking spaces and trees at each end cap,” rather than a minimum of three (3) landscape isles. 

 

Commissioner Freedman addressed Mr. Saladay by saying in the report he had asked for a reduction of the setback from seventy (70’) feet to thirty (30’) feet along Jonesboro Road.    Commissioner Freedman asked if that was still a request. 

 

Ms. Cheri Matthews, Chief Planner, said the variance went before the Planning Commission on June 10th, and they denied the request. 

 

Commissioner Freedman added condition #8 stating, “the out parcels will have road connectivity to the site, and also there will be site connectivity to Mill Road.”  He also added condition #9 stating, “two (2) principle signs monument style, one at Jonesboro Road and one at Mill Road, each thirty (30’) feet high with three-hundred, twenty-five (325’) square feet of sign area on each side and each out parcel shall be limited to monument sign twelve (12’) high with seventy-five (75’) square feet of sign area.” 

 

Commissioner Freedman made a motion to approve the resolution with all of the above conditions; Commissioner Holman seconded.

 

Commissioner Holman said he would like to add condition #10 to include accel/decel lanes.  The condition will read, “as appropriate and/or dictated by Georgia or County DOT, accel/decel lanes will be provided.”  Commissioner Freedman amended his motion to include condition #10; Commissioner Holman amended his second.

 

The vote was taken; the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Harper, Holder and Holman voting in favor.

 

 

PUBLIC WORKS:

 

Request Approval of a Contract for a Drainage Project at 113 Gardeners Grove Drive and the Adjacent Property.

 

Sealed bids were solicited to complete a drainage project at 113 Gardeners Grove Drive and adjacent property, and two (2) vendors submitted bids for this purchase.

 

                        Delmonico Restoration & Dev. $36,000.00

                        Cline Service Corp.                              49,500.00

 

Funds are available in the Department of Transportation (Repair/Maintenance) budget to complete this project.  Delmonico Restoration & Development’s bid in the amount of $36,000.00 meets bid specifications and is recommended by departmental personnel.

 

Commissioner Holder made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Holman seconded.

 

Chairman Maddox asked why the County is going to bear the burden when it should have been done when the subdivision was developed. 

 

Commissioner Holder stated the County should not have to do it.  He said if the engineer’s plans were reviewed, the “as built” was not built as designed, and the County inspected it and approved it.  In 1994, there was a flood and that is when it all occurred; in 1998, Commissioner Holder was called in because water was in a lot of the residents’ basements.  The developer was called in and changed the grade on the detention pond; a detention pond that probably was not needed.  Many lawsuits were filed after that.

 

Mr. Michael Harris, Public Works Division Director, said there would be standard maintenance done on the retention pond and the right-of-way. 

 

The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman, Freedman and Harper voting in favor.

 

 

Resolution to Modify the DOT District IV Priority List by Adding Forest Drive and Caroline Avenue to the District IV Resurfacing List.

 

The Commissioner for District IV, along with Henry County DOT staff, have inspected all of the streets in the Highlands Subdivision.  Upon inspection it was determined that Forest Drive and Caroline Avenue are two streets within this subdivision that are in need of repair.  The funding required to patch and resurface these streets is available in the DOT District IV Priority Fund, and the cost to complete this work has been estimated at:

 

                        Forest Drive                 $18,000

                        Caroline Avenue           $18,000

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holman, Harper, Freedman, and Holder voting in favor.

 

 

Resolution to Authorize the Use of Impact Fee Revenues to Assist with the Purchase of Land on Fairview Road to be Used for a Library and Voting Precinct.

 

The Commissioner for District V has identified an available tract of land on Fairview Road that could serve as the site for a Library and a voting facility.  The District V Commissioner has already set aside $500,000 from his DOT District Priority List to go towards this purchase.  The Board of Commissioners authorizes the use of $150,000 to come from the impact fee revenues to supplement the cost of this land purchase that would allow Austin Road to be realigned with Swan Lake Road, thereby creating a safer intersection at Fairview Road.

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Harper seconded for discussion.

 

Commissioner Harper stated if $150,000 in impact fees is going to be used, then a piece of that parcel needs to be designated as the Library site, otherwise it will be spending impact fees for roads.

 

Commissioner Holman said the Hidden Valley site previously identified as the library site has soil problems and it will not hold a septic system. 

 

Ms. Angus, County Manager, stated there was a problem with this $650,000 number. She said in discussions with the property owner regarding this parcel, this is not the number any longer.  As of five weeks ago, when Ms. Angus met with him, the number was $700,000 to the extent they may have made investments. 

 

Commissioner Harper suggested tabling this for two (2) reasons.  First, see what the figure actually is, and secondly, authorize them to obtain an appraisal.

 

Commissioner Holman withdrew his motion and offered a subsequent motion to direct staff to do the required work to ensure we have the funding source and to include the two (2) issues Commissioner Harper just stated.  Commissioner Harper seconded. 

 

Commissioner Freedman asked to see the report stating the Hidden Valley property would not accept a septic system.

 

The motion carried 3-1-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman and Harper voting in favor and Commissioner Freedman voting against.

 

 

PUBLIC SAFETY:

 

Resolution to Enter into an Automatic Aid Agreement with the City of McDonough Concerning Fire and Emergency Responses.

 

The Henry County Fire Department and the City of McDonough Fire Department recognize the need for mutual and automatic aid response to fire and other emergency requests.  A Memorandum of Understanding has been drafted to ensure that all citizens, regardless of jurisdictional boundaries, will receive the most prompt and proficient fire and emergency service response possible.  The execution of the document will ensure that both departments will respond to all fires and other emergency requests in a predetermined area, regardless of jurisdiction, as well as provide for joint training and consolidated dispatch and emergency communications procedures.

 

Commissioner Harper made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Holman seconded.

 

Chief Barry Jenkins, Henry County Fire Department, said the County responds on a first response basis between the Interstate and the railroad tracks inside the City Limits.  Completion of the construction of the City’s new station has finalized, and he said the City should be moving in within the next couple of weeks.  The station is located on Industrial Parkway, now known as Avalon, on the west side of the Interstate behind the old NEC building.  He said they decided to enhance House Bill 489 regarding duplication of services and to provide more prompt service to the citizens west of the Interstate.

 

The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Holder and Freedman voting in favor.

 

Bureau of Police Services Requests Acceptance of Donation of 25 Five-Drawer File Cabinets.

 

Approval is sought by the Board to allow the acceptance of the donation of 25 five-drawer cabinets by the United States Bankruptcy Court in Atlanta, Georgia.   The United States Bankruptcy Court has contacted this agency about the donation of file cabinets.  They have 70 five-drawer cabinets they are seeking to donate that are in good shape.  We have deemed that this agency could use 25 of these five-drawer cabinets.  The cabinets are required to be picked up by July, 2004.

 

Commissioner Freedman made a motion to approve the request; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Harper, Holman and Holder voting in favor.

 

 

Bureau of Police Services Requests Purchase of a 1986 Truck for Training Division.

 

The Bureau of Police Services Training Division has a need for an enclosed vehicle to store and secure training equipment.  DPS Excess Property has a 1986 International truck, which is an enclosed U-Haul type truck, Air Force blue in color, has a motorized lift on the back and is in good condition with only 55,000 miles on it and is ideal for the needs of the Training Division.  Fleet Services has advised that servicing the vehicle would not be an issue.  DPS Excess Property advises that there is a fee, not to exceed $500.00, to obtain the vehicle (valued at $12,000.00). 

 

Commissioner Freedman made a motion to approve the request; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Harper, Holman, and Holder voting in favor.

 

 

ADMINISTRATION AND FINANCE:

 

Resolution Pertaining to a Contract for Uniform Rental and Cleaning Services.

 

Sealed bids were solicited for the purchase of Uniform Rental and Cleaning Services for various departments, and eight (8) vendors submitted bids for these services.  Funds are budgeted in the various departments for these services.  Aramark Uniform Services’ bid meets bid specifications.  It has been recommended to award as a unit/price contract with no fixed quantities, prices shall remain fixed for the contract period, and materials will be ordered as required and approved.

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holman, Harper, Holder, and Freedman voting in favor.

 

 

BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS:

 

Resolution for the Appointment to the Henry County Board of Family and Children Services.

 

Ms. Betty Jean Fowler, a Henry County resident, has served on the Board of Family and Children Services and has faithfully served this Board and her term expired June 30, 2004.  Ms. Fowler has withdrawn her request for reappointment.

 

Commissioner Harper said he would like to make a recommendation of Ms. Joyce Rodgers who has agreed to serve based on the Board’s approval.

 

Commissioner Harper made the motion to appoint Ms. Joyce Rodgers to serve on the Board of Family and Children Services; Commissioner Holder seconded.  Commissioner Freedman stated she was an excellent choice.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Freedman and Holman voting in favor.

 

 

AGENDA AMENDMENTS / EMERGENCY AGENDA ITEMS:

 

1) A request by the Tax Commissioner for funding for internet enabling of the property tax payments system.  Commissioner Holman made a motion to approve; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman, Harper and Freedman voting in favor.

 

2) A resolution to allocate all pooled expenses located in the unallocated department in the General Fund.  Ms. Angus stated this was to address the 2003-2004 budget, and it is a clean-up exercise so that variances are not significant and auditors will not have to note that in their auditing opinions.  Commissioner Holman made a motion to approve; Commissioner Harper seconded.  Ms. Angus said it is significant to note there was an allocated amount of $750,000 out of the capital asset fund last year to the old Courthouse.  She said if this is approved, we are not encumbering those funds; we did not spend them.  The money has gone from the old Courthouse allocation and will cover other things.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman, Harper and Freedman voting in favor.

 

3) A request for approval of a bid proposal for construction of the Locust Grove Library.  Commissioner Holder moved to approve the resolution awarding the bid for the Locust Grove Library in the amount of $1,574,300 to Leslie Construction.  Commissioner Holman seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman, Harper and Freedman voting in favor. 

 

4) A resolution directing the Henry County Transportation Department to install additional stop signs at the intersection of Mitchell Road and McCullough Road.  Commissioner Harper made a motion to approve the resolution; Commissioner Holman seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Holder and Freedman voting in favor.

 

5) A resolution to authorize the addition of two (2) new large patching crews, two (2) pothole crews and a chip seal crew within the Transportation Department.  Commissioner Holman made the motion to approve for discussion purposes; Commissioner Holder seconded for discussion.  Ms. Angus stated with the funding needs that we have, she did not think we would be able to do $3 million out of the $5 million remaining for all the transportation requests because there are a lot of other things, but said the proposals are worth considering.  Chairman Maddox asked if there was a way we could go with one each of the crews right now until more revenue is obtained.  Mr. Harris said anything that they could get would be advantageous and a lot of the patching is tied to resurfacing needs.  He said it could be phased in, and the needs may change in order to maintain our level of service.  Ms. Angus said she would like to put together a couple of options that are different funding amounts, and also look at the major issues regarding fire and police.  Mr. Chua, Department of Transportation Director, said we have roads throughout the County requiring a lot of attention and without these crews, things will be put off more and more.  He assessed the County is about 3 to 4 years behind as far as maintenance of the roads, and as time goes along, we have more roads being added to the maintenance list.  Without the five crews requested, everything will be pushed back.  Commissioner Holman withdrew his motion and Commissioner Holder withdrew his second.  Commissioner Holder suggested finding out what the priorities are, include the fire and police, and see where we stand.  He said we need to find out how many and what size crews we can fund.   Commissioner Freedman said he tends to disagree that one patching crew would not make a difference.  Commissioner Freedman made a motion to table the issue until the Board’s next meeting pending a review from the County Manager; Commissioner Holder seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Holder, Harper and Holman voting in favor.

 

6) Tabled from the July 6th meeting, Tax Assessor’s Board Appointment.  Commissioner Holman moved to appoint Leah Preston Fricky to the Tax Assessor’s Board; Commissioner Freedman seconded. 

 

Chairman Maddox read the resolution as follows:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whereas, there is a vacancy on the Board or Tax Assessor’s due to the resignation of Mr. Charlie Reddoch and

 

Whereas, the law requires that the County Commission appoint a successor when a vacancy occurs and;

 

Whereas, the person appointed will serve a term of 6 years ending June 1, 2009 and;

 

Now, Therefore, Be It Resolved, the Henry County Board of Commissioners appointments Leah Preston Frickey to the Henry County Board of Tax Assessors.

 

 

Commissioner Holder asked what the process was for submitting names for nomination.

 

Commissioner Holman said he had brought to the Board’s attention that when we make Board appointments, we do not have an opportunity to meet the individuals. 

 

Commissioner Freedman stated he had reviewed all the nominations, and he felt she was the best qualified. 

 

Commissioner Harper stated he had read where a County employee shall not serve on the Board.  (Note: Mr. Harold Selph , who is an employee in the Sheriff’s Department, was previously nominated by Commissioner Holder.)

 

Mr. Jaugstetter said the Personnel Ordinance prohibits a Henry County employee from serving on an appointed Board.  He said if the Board should elect a Sheriff’s Deputy, he felt there was a legitimate defense to it.   Mr. Jaugstetter said the Supreme Court has heard that issue and decided a Deputy Sheriff is a Sheriff’s employee, not a County employee; he said their view is there is a distinction between the Sheriff and County government.

 

Commissioner Holder ‘called the question;’ Commissioner Holman seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holder, Holman, Freedman and Harper voting in favor.

 

Chairman Maddox asked for the vote on the resolution to appoint Ms. Leah Preston Fricky to the Henry County Board of Tax Assessor’s; the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Freedman and Holman voting in favor.

 

7) Approval of Minutes:  June 14, 2004 Regular Meeting

                                           June 29, 2004 Called Meeting

                                           July 6, 2004 Regular Meeting

                                           July 14, 2004 Called Meeting

 

Commissioner Harper moved to approve the Minutes; Commissioner Holman seconded.  Commissioner Freedman stated he abstained from voting on the July 14th minutes due to his absence from that meeting.  Chairman Maddox stated the vote will be taken on the June 14th, June 29th, and July 6th Minutes.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Harper, Holder and Holman voting in favor. 

 

Chairman Maddox asked for the vote on the Minutes of July 14, 2004 Called Meeting with the Board of Education; the motion carried 3-0-1 with Commissioners Holder, Harper and Holman voting in favor and Commissioner Freedman abstaining.  

 

Commissioner Holman referenced the adopted Minutes of June 15, 2004, and asked the County Clerk, Ms. Susan Craig, to turn to page 4 of 20, third paragraph.  He asked for “District V” in the first sentence to be removed and replaced with “District I.”   Also on page 14 of 20, eighth paragraph, it is written “The motion carried 4-1-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Freedman and Adams voting in favor and Commissioner Holman voting against,” and needs to be changed to read, “The motion carried 4-1-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman and Adams voting in favor and Commissioner Holder voting against.”  Commissioner Holman made the motion to amend the June 15, 2004 Minutes; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Holman, Holder, Freedman, and Harper voting in favor.

 

 

PUBLIC COMMENTS:

 

There were no public comments.

 

 

COMMISSIONER(S) COMMENTS:

 

Commissioner Holder asked for a place or area to be designated during the meetings for the Planning and Zoning staff to sit where they could place their maps and presentation material, because it is inconvenient for them to sit in the audience and try to put their documents under chairs.  He asked for the Board to consider this and see if some arrangements could be made for them.

 

Commissioner Holman cited the Grand Jury presentments of the April Term.  He noted the presentments included concerns about retaining experienced police officers.  He also stated it included the recommendation of increasing the pay scale for upper and middle management in the department.  Commissioner Holman stated the Board does not need to take any action at this time; the Board merely needs to acknowledge receipt of the presentments.   It was noted the foreman on the Grand Jury was Mr. Jack Deutch. 

 

Commissioner Freedman said the Board should be ashamed of themselves regarding the vote they took on the commercial property; it was not commercial property.  He said he would present a letter from the concerned citizens of Falling Waters to be entered into the record.  Secondly, on January 20, 2004 he made a proposal about the pay of the Commissioners, because one Commissioner had made it a political issue that “we voted ourselves a pay raise, which was not true.”  Commissioner Freedman said he made a proposal that amended that to be a much less pay raise and more consistent.  He said this issue would be on the next Agenda, and wanted the entire Board to vote on it.  He asked that no one leave during the vote.

 

 

UPCOMING MEETINGS:

 

Chairman Maddox announced the upcoming meetings as follows:

 

July 19, 2004               4:00 p.m.          Public Hearing and Adoption of Millage Rate

July 20, 2004                                       Primary Elections

August 2, 2004 9:00 a.m.          Regular Board of Commissioners Meeting

August 3, 2004 9:00 a.m.          Regular Board of Commissioners Meeting

August 10, 2004                                   Primary Election Run-Off

August 16, 2004           9:00 a.m.          Regular Board of Commissioners Meeting

August 17, 2004           6:30 p.m.          Regular Board of Commissioners Meeting

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to amend the Agenda and move into Executive Session, in accordance with the provisions of O.C.G.A. 50-14-3, and other applicable laws, and pursuant to advice by Patrick Jaugstetter, the County Attorney, for the purposes of discussing the acquisition of real estate, pending and/or potential litigation, and personnel matters.   Commissioner Harper seconded; the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Freedman, Holman and Holder voting in favor.

 

 

                                                An Executive Session Was Held

 

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to reconvene into Public Session; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 5-0-0 with Chairman Maddox, Commissioners Holder, Freedman, Holman and Harper voting in favor. 

 

Commissioner Holman made a motion to authorize the Chairman to sign the affidavit of the Executive Session; Commissioner Harper seconded.  The motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Freedman, Holman, Holder and Harper voting in favor. 

 

Commissioner Holman made the motion to amend and move this resolution for the purpose of designating United Healthcare as the County’s health insurance carrier for the fiscal year 2004 and 2005 and to allocate from the unallocated funding source an additional $200,000 to cover the increased cost over fiscal year 2003 and 2004.  (Noted by Commissioner Holman: Just so the County Clerk will know we have struck the last line where the $200,000 will be transferred from the $7 million, and it will just say from the 2004/05 unallocated funds.); Commissioner Harper seconded; and the motion passed by a vote of 4-0-0, with Commissioners Harper, Holder, Holman and Freedman voting in favor. 

 

Commissioner Harper made a motion to adjourn (1:16 p.m.); Commissioner Holman seconded; the motion carried 4-0-0 with Commissioners Harper, Holman, Freedman, and Holder voting in favor.

 

                                                            Leland Maddox, Chairman

 

Peggy L. Malcolm, Deputy County Clerk