Commissioners adopt Moratorium on Greenspace subdivision roads

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moratorium

ELLIJAY, Ga. – Originally considered for Class D and Class E roads, Gilmer’s Board of Commissioners is placing a moratorium on green space subdivisions as they work on details before planning to release the moratorium with a modified ordinance in early 2021.

According to Planning and Zoning Director Karen Henson, Gilmer has a couple subdivision projects currently approved in R2 that are abiding by lot sizes. However, the concern is if these lots are sold and then divided and resold. Class E Roads are only allowed to have 10 lots on them. The county will be looking at options to prevent such a process that would ultimately result in an larger number or lots on roads that cannot support them.

Discussion of the agenda item saw more focus on the moniker of “inferior roads” and right of ways than specific Class E roads. However, Henson indicated in the meeting that all Class E designated roads would be considered a part of the moratorium and later clarified as such.

As approved in the meeting, Henson herself clarified in an email that the Moratorium will be for:

  1. The suspension of Class E roads.

  2. The suspension of subdivisions of land along inferior County roads, which are roads with less than 40 foot right of way and 20 foot surface width with 3 foot shoulders (except for the 2 annual splits).

  3. The suspension of greenspace developments.

During the meeting, with advice from Henson and County Attorney David Clark, the Board is setting the moratorium to take effect later, and will begin the process of the ordinance change that will take several months to complete through advertising, First Reading, a Public Hearing, and a Second Reading with Final Adoption.

As contractors move into the moratorium, it will not shut down developments in areas as it was stated that they can continue developments with upgraded road systems. It will not affect Class D roads in general unless they fall into the county termed “inferior roads.”

 

New updates coming to Meeks Park, multi-unit moratorium extended

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Meeks Park

BLAIRSVILLE, Ga – Among the several contract and agreements signed during the June Union County Commission Meeting, two pertained to future improvements to Meeks Park.

In the first agreement, Al Garnto Fine Art Studio will design, construct, and erect a floral-themed, full-color, metal sculpture. The sculpture will be located at the new pavilion and cost a maximum of $3,500.

“We appreciate Al. He’s always worked with us on all the sculpture items in the park. We felt like this would be the add on to make our new pavilion,” stated Sole Commissioner Lamar Paris.

Garnto will also work the architect for a new design in front of the double gym once it’s completed.

The second agreement focused on developing a new restroom facility within the park. It’s between the county and Engineering Management, Inc. to design a wastewater pump state. The cost of the agreement is $16,200 and went into effect on June 8, 2020. TVA and Meeks Park will fund most of the new restroom facility project in part because it falls within the TVA floodplain.

“In our long-range plan, we hope into two to three years to put an amphitheater in Meeks Park. We’ve worked with the TVA for several years on trying to design and locate a restroom,” explained Paris. “They are funding the majority of the cost of this, but not including the wastewater pump, so we have to pump the effluent from the site into the sewer line.”

Union County had to apply for a permit from TVA to build the new restroom.

Multi-Development Moratorium Extended

The multi-family unit development moratorium was extended for another 190 days from April 2, 2020. The original resolution went into effect on Aug. 6, 2019. The county prolonged the moratorium to continue to work on new regulations.

“The county is still in the process of rewriting our guidelines for multi-family and multi-story housing units,” added Paris. “We did a moratorium to prevent additional units from being built until we had time to study and see what we could do to make sure our regulations could catch up.”

Socially distanced county commission meeting attendees.

Additional Business

Union County also entered into an agreement with CHA Consulting to provide a conceptual site plan and feasibility study for the Union County Jail. The cost was $2,500. Commissioner Paris doesn’t foresee this project being built until the “distant future,” but they are beginning to look into possible options.

“I hope it’s light-years away. Anyway, we’re also having to evaluate property along the way. We feel that we need to be looking at that property now, so if we find a parcel that the Sheriff and myself feel’s a future site, we must evaluate,” explained Paris.

U.S. Army Garrison Fort Benning and Dawson, Fannin, Gilmer, Hall, Lumpkin, Union, and White issued a memorandum of agreement to expedite local and regional mutual aid assistance, share information, and sustain emergency aid.

Union County contracted Freeman Gas for propane services in the amount of $0.89 per gallon for the next year.

Teague Nall and Perkins, Inc. (TNP) was contracted out to provide engineering consulting services on an as needed basis and will be billed monthly.

Everyone wore masks during the meeting.

-An addendum agreement between Union County and AT&T Georgia was signed for adding additional rate elements to the existing E911 Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) equipment and software. The cost was $1,500 and went into effect on Sept. 30, 2019.

ACCG Group Self-Insurance Workers’ Compensation Fund issued a $4,000 Employee Safety Grant. The money will go toward firefighting equipment, such as gloves, boots, and helmets.

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