Council Meeting Minutes January 3, 2019



Thursday, January 3, 2019

Officials Present

Mayor:                    Ted Terry
YT Bell, Jamie Carroll, Andrea Cervone, Awet Eyasu, Ahmed Hassan,
City Manager:         Keith Barker
City Clerk:              Tracy Ashby
City Attorney:        Stephen Quinn


Mayor Terry called the meeting to order at 7:00pm.

Roll Call: YT Bell, Awet Eyasu, Ahmed Hassan, Jamie Carroll, Andrea Cervone

Absent:  Mario Williams

Pledge of Allegiance

Andrea Cervone made a motion to amend to agenda to add a presentation by Sarah Rogers on historic overlay districts. Awet Eyasu seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried: item added as C3 (5, 0).

Awet Eyasu made a motion to amend to agenda to add one extra hour to the alcohol pouring hours as item H8. Jamie Carroll seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).


C1) Approve Minutes: 12/4/18 Council Meeting
Ahmed Hassan made a motion to approve the minutes for the 12/4/18 Council Meeting. Jamie Carroll seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).

C2) Council Elect Vice-Mayor
Ahmed Hassan made a motion to nominate Awet Eyasu to serve as Vice-Mayor for 2019. Jamie Carroll
seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (4-Yes: Ahmed Hassan, Jamie Carroll, Andrea Cervone, YT Bell, 1-Abstain: Awet Eyasu).

C3) Presentation on Historic Overlay Districts
Sarah Rogers provided a presentation on the historic overlay districts and potential funding for the program.

C4)  Recognize Retirees
The Mayor and Council recognized retiring Chief Court Clerk Shirley Green after nine years of service in Clarkston. A plaque honoring her service was presented.

The Mayor and Council recognized retiring City Manager Keith Barker after seven years of service to the City. A plaque honoring his service was presented. Mr. Barker thanked both current and former Elected Officials he had worked with and the supportive staff.


D1) Confirm Attorney: Stephen Quinn
D2) Confirm Auditor: Maudlin and Jenkins
D3) Confirm Judge: David Will
D4) Confirm Solicitor: Christopher Diwan

Awet Eyasu made a motion to adopt the consent agenda items D1-D4.  YT Bell seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).

Warren Hadlock thanked the Council on the progress at Friendship Forest. He expressed he was very proud to have been part of bringing Keith Barker to Clarkston and appreciated his service.

Chris Busing provided comments on French protestors and spoke on his pending litigation with the City.

Brian Medford thanked the City for postponing the NAMB PUD item to allow Planning & Zoning to further review. He encouraged the council, to expand making the city bike able and walkable.

A Decatur resident spoke on a program that assists veterans with returning to their communities.

The new City Manager Robin Gomez, spoke on his excitement in joining the City as both the Manager and as a resident. He begins the work of City Manager on January 7, 2019.

Mayor Terry closed public comments.

1) Planning & Zoning Report
Shawanna Qawiy spoke on the demolition of 3895 Bld A and B on Church Street which is associated with the NAMB project. She reported the microbrewery ordinance, will go before the Planning & Zoning Board on January 22 and a copy is available for review at City Hall Annex during business hours.  The City has received an application for the property at 3723 Debelle Street to request a rezoning and a variance from NR1 to NR2 and to divide the lot to build an additional single family home. She reported that an application has been received for an annexation and rezoning for properties 3809, 3835 3861 3827 on East Avenue to construct 44 tiny homes and that this item will be on the February Planning and Zoning Meeting.   She provided an update on the NAMB PUD which has been deferred after the applicant has agreed in writing to defer for the January 22 Planning and Zoning Meeting.

2)  City Manager’s Report
Mr. Barker provided a SPLOST update that a public information open house was held in December to discuss the 4 projects currently under design by Pond and Company. He advised that the City has completed 3 SPLOST projects and the 4th is under construction on Montreal road for sidewalk repairs and ADA improvements. In December the City held a charrette for the 10 Minute Walk grant and the City’s hired planning firm, Alta, is expected to submit the master plan in March 2019. He provided the budget report thru December 31, 2018.

3)  City Attorney’s Report
Thanked the Mayor and Council for reappointing him to serve as City Attorney. He congratulated Mr. Barker on his retirement.

4)  Council Remarks
YT Bell reported she had joined the Sagal Radio Board.

Awet Eyasu reported on the conference he attended in December. 

Ahmed Hassan thanked Mr. Barker for his service and welcomed Mr. Gomez to the City.

Jamie Carroll thanked Mr. Barker for the work he had done for the City. He echoed the welcoming of Mr. Gomez to serve as the new City Manager.

Andrea Cervone spoke on the ambitious efforts of the Council members in 2019 and she thanked Mr. Barker for his guidance of the Council. She welcomed Mr. Gomez and stated this would be a big year for the City.

5)  Mayor’s Report
Mayor Terry read a poem to honor Mr. Barker.



H1)  H1)  PUBLIC HEARING: Myrick Gurosky and Associates for North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, Incorporated with Clarkston International Bible Church is submitting a site development plan for a proposed Planned Unit Development (PUD) consisting of nine (9) parcels  located at  3895 Church Street-Parcel 18 096 16 003, 3865 Church Street, 18 096 06 006, 3871 Church Street, 18 096 16 005, 993 Rowland Street-18 096 15 005, 1011 Rowland Street-18 096 15 004, 1001 Rowland Street-18 096 15 006, 966 Rowland Street-18 096 16 008, 954 Rowland Street-18 096 16 010, 960 Rowland Street-18 096 16 009 Clarkston, GA 30021. If approved the PUD will include multifamily housing, new parking areas, and an activity center.


H2)  Adopt a Resolution to Renew the Service Delivery Strategy
Mr. Barker reported that the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) requires counties and municipalities to adopt a local government service delivery strategy. Without a Service Delivery Strategy verified by DCA, a local government or respective authorities will not be eligible to receive any state permits or financial assistance. In addition, any local projects that are not consistent with the strategy will not receive any state permits or financial assistance.


Due to the creation of the new city of Stonecrest, DCA requires DeKalb County to update the Service Delivery Strategy (SDS) with all cities. DeKalb County has requested that all cities submit approved Resolutions and all completed documents by January 5, 2019.

YT Bell made a motion to adopt the Resolution to renew the Service Delivery Strategy. Awet Eyasu seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).


H3)  Approve Bid for Friendship Forest Wildlife Sanctuary Renovations
The City Manager reported on that City staff terminated the previous contract for construction at Friendship Forest with Construction 57, Inc. in October for lack of adherence to project schedule and work performance that did not meet the project specifications. The work that was completed and paid for by the city was adequately completed.


A new bid package was revised to reflect the existing status of the project (project tasks that remain to be completed) and re-advertised. The project was advertised for 30 days (December 2nd, 2018 to January 2nd, 2019). One bid was received. Leach Landscaping provided a bid of $1,030,800. The bid submitted met all requirements. Leach Landscaping is deemed to have the experience required to satisfactorily complete the project.


As of December 30th, 2018, the URA Bond Funding remaining is $665,658. The costs to complete the project is estimated to be $1,086,440. The required funding available to complete the project is $420,782; rounded up to $500,000 for various additional scope changes that are anticipated.


The SPLOST project costs to-date are less than the budget identified in early 2018 (before SPLOST revenues were collected). To-date, the current expenditures are approximately $600,000 less than budgeted. The trend, based on revised cost estimates for 2019 projects, continues to reflect construction and design costs to be less than the SPLOST budget. Sufficient funds exist in the SPLOST program to fund the cost to complete the Friendship Forest Wildlife Sanctuary project. Weather permitting, the project will be completed within 60 days of a NTP issuance.


Mr. Barker advised that Staff recommends the City Council approve the attached agreement for construction services with Leach Landscaping, Inc. in the amount of $1,030,800 and authorize the City Manager to utilize up to $500,000 of SPLOST funding to cover the remaining construction costs.

Council discussion on the verification of using SPLOST funds to complete the project.


Awet Eyasu made a motion to approve the construction agreement with Leach Landscaping for the Friendship Forest redevelopment project, contingent upon the approval of the City Attorney. Ahmed Hassan seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0). 


H4)  Approve Resolution to Grant A License To Global Growers To Allow Community Garden Farming At Forty Oaks
Mr. Barker reported that the Global Growers Network, Inc. (“Global Growers”) is a Georgia non-profit company dedicated to the mission of assisting the production of healthy, sustainably-grown food by local farmers. The City of Clarkston, Georgia (the “City”) owns certain property known as Forty Oaks Nature Preserve (“40 Oaks”). The prior owner of 40 Oaks, DeKalb County, allowed Global Growers to operate a community garden at 40 Oaks known as the Clarkston International Garden.


The City Council recognizes the benefit to the community of the Clarkston International Garden and desires to allow it to continue until the property is needed for another use. The City desires to grant a non-exclusive, revocable license to Global Growers to allow community gardening at 40 Oaks, pursuant to the terms, conditions and limitations set forth within the attached Resolution. 


Andrea Cervone made a motion to approve the resolution to grant a license to Global Growers to allow community garden farming at Forty Oaks. Jamie Carroll seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).

H5) Adopt Ordinance to Establish a Historic Preservation Commission
Andrea Cervone provided information on the proposed ordinance and discussion on the appropriate membership numbers. Council discussed amending Section 3c the membership to consist of three members with one appointed by the mayor for a one year term and two appointed by the council with the initial two and three year terms.


Andrea Cervone made a motion to adopt an ordinance to establish a Historic Preservation Commission including the discussed amendments and upon the city Attorney’s approval. YT Bell second the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).

H6)  Discussion to Adopt a Non-Discrimination Ordinance
Andrea Cervone provided information on the purpose of the proposed nondiscrimination ordinance to allow potential victims of discrimination to have a recourse and remedy to address.  

Council discussion of the proposed process to address submitted complaints. Mr. Barker encouraged the Council to include the City Manager in the initial discussion process to allow him to provide insight on potential costs, logistics and staffing considerations.  Andrea Cervone clarified that this ordinance is still in the early discussion phase and more SAC meetings are planned before a proposed ordinances would be submitted for council consideration.


H7)  Discuss Amending Zoning Ordinance to allow automobile sales as a conditional use in NC-2

Ahmed Hassan stated that several businesses on Church Street and Brockett road that had moved into the City during past annexations, are unable to operate automobile sales business in their current zoning.  Discussion on options to consider allowing automobile sales as a conditional use in NC-2. Mr. Barker stated that the businesses being discussed had not been automobile sales/dealers, but were auto repair shops or auto brokers who had cars onsite, which is not permitted. Ms. Qawiy confirmed the described operation of those businesses and what is permitted.  Mayor Terry said the council would continue reviewing this issue to consider possible amendment to the ordinance.


H8 Discuss Amending Chapter 3 of the Code, regarding alcoholic beverages, to allow "late night sales" for consumption on the premises subject to certain conditions
Jamie Carroll advised the proposed ordinance is to allow extending the alcohol serving hours on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday mornings Saturday morning to 4:00 a.m.  Additionally, the businesses would be required to engage an off-duty Clarkston or DeKalb County police officer to provide security at the licensed establishment during late night hours.  


Several Residents expressed concerns with potential issues in extending the alcohol serving hours and questioned the surrounding Cities/County alcohol hours.


Awet Eyasu made a motion to table the item until the January 29 Work Session.  Jamie Carroll seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (4, 1 – Abstain Ahmed Hassan).



Awet Eyasu made a motion to adjourn the Council Meeting. Jamie Carroll seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).

Meeting adjourned.



Tracy Ashby
City Clerk, City of Clarkston
Approved: 2-5-19