CLARKSTON CITY COUNCIL
Tuesday, July 2, 2019
Mayor: Ted Terry
Council: YT Bell, Jamie Carroll, Andrea Cervone, Awet Eyasu, Ahmed Hassan, Mario Williams
City Manager: Robin I. Gomez
City Clerk: Tracy Ashby
City Attorney: Stephen Quinn
- CALL TO ORDER
Mayor Terry called the meeting to order at 7:00pm.
- ROLL CALL/ PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Present: YT Bell, Awet Eyasu, Ahmed Hassan, Andrea Cervone, Jamie Carroll
Absent: Mario Williams
Amend Agenda: Awet Eyasu made a motion to amend the agenda to adopt Resolution to for the DeKalb County Land Bank. Jamie Carroll seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).
- ADMINISTRATIVE BUSINESS/ PRESENTATION
C1) Approve Minutes: 6-25-19 Special Call Meetings 10 am and 6:30pm, and Council Meeting 6-4-19
Jamie Carroll made a motion to approve the minutes. YT Bell seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).
C2) Introduce Clarkston New Hires: OFC Brand, OFC Torres, Court Clerk Amanda Stargent and Public Works- Fatayi Hassan
The City Manager introduced and welcomed new hires OFC Brand , OFC Torres and Fatayi Hassan.
1) Planning & Zoning Report
2) City Manager’s Report
Mr. Gomez provided the current financial report through June 30, 2019. He discussed the current progress with the construction projects. He encouraged residents to attend the upcoming July 4th event and the August 6th National Night out, with both being held at Milam Park.
3) City Attorney’s Report
4) Council Remarks
Andrea Cervone discussed the upcoming July 4th which includes an Open Mic event. She reported on the city’s partnership with Grandmamma’s House for a program on July 10 on how to appeal property tax assessments. Senior Game Night will be July 18. The Alif Institute is holding a free Arabic language workshop on July 20. She provided details on a grant application to assist with energy efficient retrofit program.
Jamie Carroll reported on a scheduled event at Kathmandu on July 10th for operating a childcare in residences.
Awet Eyasu reported on his attendance of Refugee Day and the Rhoniga celebrations. He discussed his GMA training classes attended at the June annual convention.
YT Bell discussed the status of the Clarkston Complete Count committee and she encouraged interested residents to sign up. She encouraged attendance of the multicultural mental health event scheduled for July 13.
5) Mayor’s Report
- PUBLIC COMMENTS
Any member of the public may address the Council, during the time allotted for public comment. Each attendee will be allowed 3 minutes for comments at the discretion of the Presiding Officer. The public comment period will be limited to 40 minutes and it is not a time for dialogue. If your public comment contains a series of questions, please submit those to the City Clerk in writing. This will facilitate follow-up by the council or staff. The City Council desires to allow an opportunity for public comment; however, the business of the City must proceed in an orderly, timely manner.
Debby Gathman discussed her code citation for selling eggs.
Susan Hood urged the council to direct staff to use the RFP process for the zoning rewrite.
Pat Davis Morris thanked the City in their cooperation with their neighborhood block party.
John Cargile thanked the Mayor for his positive comments in a recent interview. He encouraged transparency and honesty in the zoning rewrite process.
Mayor Terry closed the public comments and reminded the public hearing sign in will conclude in approximately 10 minutes. Anyone interested in speaking should sign up on the forms.
- OLD BUSINESS
F1) PUBLIC HEARING: Consider a variance application request from Tad Braswell, Oak Hall Companies, LLC to vary from Section 703 NR-3 High Density Neighborhood Residential District (f) Bulk and area regulations to reduce the minimum lot size of 5,000 sq. ft. to 3, 000 sq. ft. and to reduce the minimum lot width of 50 feet to 40 feet. If granted the applicant will develop 37 parcels on the properties located at 3809, 3835, 3861, and 3827 East Avenue, Clarkston, GA 30021.
The Planning and Development Director provided information on the application for variance. The application was presented at the Planning & Zoning Meeting on May 21 and then the Council Meeting June 4th when it was deferred. Ms. Qawiy stated the staff recommended approval of the variance request with the conditions:
1. The minimum lot widths of all 36 lots shall be 40 feet with;
a. 1 lot shall be a minimum of 3200 square feet
b. 11 lots shall have a minimum lot size of 3300 square feet
c. 6 lots shall have a minimum lot size of 3400 square feet
d. 8 lots shall have a minimum lot size of 3500 square feet
e. 4 lots have a minimum lot size of 3700 square feet
f. The 6 lots that abut the Snapfinger Creek Tributary shall have a minimum lot size of 5,000
2. The developer is limited to build 36 homes on the proposed 4.5+/- acres.
3. The developer shall adhere to the 24 conditions as approved at the May 7, 2019 City Council
meeting for the parcels located at 3861/3827/3865/3809 East Avenue.
4. The developer is required to submit a final plat for approval to staff and DeKalb County for
recording before applying for any permits.
Mayor Terry stated the public hearing time would be for 14 minutes allotted for each side.
The applicant Ted Braswell spoke on the need for the requested variance and the proposed project
Mayor Terry opened the public hearing.
Speakers in Support:
Hazel Poe (current property owner) spoke in support of the variance request.
Doug Dillard (Dillard Sellars Attorneys at Law) spoke in support of the variance request.
Connie Stafford spoke in support of the variance request.
Speakers in Opposition:
Lisa Williams spoke in opposition of the variance request.
Ann McCormack spoke in opposition of the variance request.
Dean Moore spoke in opposition of the variance request.
Laura Hopkins spoke in opposition of the variance request.
Mayor Terry closed the public hearing.
Jamie Carroll made a motion to approve the application for a variance with the staff recommended conditions. Councilman Carroll stated in resident expressed concerns regarding the tree canopy, the variance will allow for more preservation of existing trees. YT Bell seconded the motion. Councilwoman Bell stated that the adopted LCI study called for a variety of housing options at different price points. Councilman Eyasu requested comments be held until the completion of the motion.
Awet Eyasu requested the council use facts to make determinations and requested they maintain the NR1, 10,000 square foot lot size to eliminate creating a precedent for future developments.
Additional discussion on the potential greenspace on the project.
A vote was called and the motion carried (3- YES: Jamie Carroll, Andrea Cervone, YT Bell, 1- NO: Awet Eyasu, 1 ABSTAIN: Ahmed Hassan).
- NEW BUSINESS
G1) Approve 2019 Millage Rate
The City manager provide a presentation on the proposed 2019 Millage rate.
b) Public Hearing to take comment on the proposed 2019 millage rate
Mayor Terry opened the public hearing.
Dean Moore addressed questions on new developments and their impact on the current tax digest.
No other comments.
Mayor Terry closed the public hearing.
c) Adopt 2019 Millage Rate by ordinance
Ahmed Hassan made a motion to approve the 2019 millage rate as 15.89. YT bell seconded the motion. A Vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).
G2) Appoint members for the Historical Preservation Commission
Mayor Terry invited Pat Davis Morris and Dean Moore, applicants in attendance, to spoke on their interest to serve on the Historic Preservation Commission.
Discussion: The Commission shall consist of three (3) members, two (2) appointed by the City Council and one (1) appointed by the Mayor. All members shall be residents of Clarkston. Members shall serve three (3) year terms. Members may not serve more than two (2) consecutive terms. Initial appointments shall be: one (1) member for one (1) year to be appointed by the Mayor; one (1) member for two (2) years, appointed by the City Council; and one (1) member for three (3) years, appointed by City Council.
Mayor Terry stated his nominee will be Ashton Walker (one year term). He further stated a poll by the Council nominated Pat Davis Morris (3 year term) and Debra Johnson (2 year term).
Awet Eyasu made a motion to appoint Ashton Walker (Mayor Nominee -one year term), Debra Johnson (2 year term) and Pat Davis Morris (3 year term). Andrea Cervone seconded the motion. Awet Eyasu asked to nominate Dean Moore as a backup in the event a position comes open. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).
G3) Application for a Temporary Alcohol License One Day Special Event
The City Manager advised this event will be held on August 15 at the Clarkston Community Center.
YT Bell made a motion to approve the Temporary Alcohol License One Day Special Event with a maximum of four pourers. Andrea Cervone seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (4-YES Jamie Carroll, Andrea Cervone, YT Bell, Awet Eyasu, 1-ABSTAIN: Ahmed Hassan).
G4) Adopt Resolution of the City Of Clarkston Related to the DeKalb County Transit Master Plan
The City Manager stated that the resolution would be updated to add language under #3 “The City of Clarkston requests that the cities within DeKalb County have a formal role in determining the project priorities of the transit master plan to include a Clarkston Arterial Rapid Transit (ART) component.”
Jamie Carroll made a motion to adopt the Resolution of the City Of Clarkston Related to the DeKalb County Transit Master Plan with the amendment that on Section 3, they include that we recommend they include a City of Clarkston Arterial Rapid Transit (ART) component. YT Bell seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).
G5) Adopt Resolution to Support DeKalb County Land Bank
Mr. Gomez stated the Council had approved an IGA with DeKalb in April 2017 and he detailed the interim interactions and the purpose of the Land bank. Discussion on the process for adoption by the Land Bank agreement with Lithonia and DeKalb County.
Jamie Carroll made a motion to adopt the resolution to Support DeKalb County Land Bank. Awet Eyasu seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).
Awet Eyasu made a motion to adjourn the Council Meeting. YT Bell seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried (5, 0).