City Council Meeting 2-2-2021

MINUTES
CLARKSTON CITY COUNCIL
Tuesday, February 2, 2021
Via Zoom
Officials Present by Teleconference
Mayor:        Beverly H. Burks
Council:    Jamie Carroll, Awet Eyasu, Laura Hopkins
Debra Johnson
City Manager:    Robin I. Gomez 
City Clerk:    Tracy Ashby 
City Attorney:    Stephen Quinn

A.    CALL TO ORDER 

B.    ROLL CALL/ PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE   
    Jamie Carroll, Awet Eyasu, Debra Johnson, Laura Hopkins
    Absent: Ahmed Hassan

C.    ADMINISTRATIVE BUSINESS/ PRESENTATION
C1) Approve Minutes: Council Meeting 1-12-2021
Debra Johnson made a motion to Approve the 1-12-2021minutes.   Awet Eyasu seconded the motion. A vote was called and the motion carried. (4,0). 

C2) Micro Life Institute Inc/The Cottages on Vaughan Residential Development
Representatives for MicroLife provided a brief presentation on the status and progress of the project.


D.    REPORTS:  
1)    Planning & Zoning Report
Shawanna Qawiy reported that the Zoning Rewrite contract has been completed and is pending signatures, She discussed the status for the steering committee, and she discussed that filming in Clarkston of Raising Dion for the week of February 2nd. 

2)    City Manager’s Report
The City Manager provided updates on encouraging residents to continue to wear a mask, the importance of social distance, covid testing in Clarkston and that Ethne Health has started a vaccine site that will follow the State priority criteria. 

Meeting restarted 7:18pm    

Mr. Gomez discussed the City Administrative operations and that the buildings will remain to be closed, currently thru the end of February, and status will be contingent on covid updates.  Alcohol server cards are now being issued by appointment only, building permits are being processed under an online process with the Planning Department.  Mr. Gomez provided an update on decorative lighting, banners and plantings with the streetscape project.  The Grand opening/ rededication for Friendship Forest will be held on Friday, 3-12-2021 at 1pm.  He reminder that the Council/ Staff Retreat via zoom, will be held on Friday, February 12 and the public can watch meeting.  Mr. Gomez provided the Financial report thru year end 2020 and there are no significant changes. 

3)    City Attorney’s Report 
No report


4)    Council Remarks
Awet Eyasu discussed the Public Safety SAC meeting scheduled to be held by Zoom on 2-9-2021.

Laura Hopkins thanked the City Manager for assisting with vaccination drive on the past weekend.

5)    Mayor’s Report
The Mayor reminded residents of the upcoming Special Election 3-16-2021 and she encouraged active voting. 


E.    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.

Mayor Burks read the public comment policy.
Mr. Gomez provided the names of registered speakers.

Brian Medford thanked the City Manager for handling the issue on early morning dumpsters pickups on West Rowland. 

Mark Perkins discussed his candidacy for the upcoming March 16 Special Election and he extended an invitation for residents to contact him.


F.    OLD BUSINESS
F1) Appoint/ fill one (1) vacant position on the Planning and Zoning Board.
Awet Eyasu made a motion to  nominate Lisa Williams to serve on the Planning and Zoning Committee.
Laura Hopkins seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (4,0).

G.    NEW BUSINESS
G1)  Standing Advisory Committees - Appointing/Selecting Chairs and Vice-Chairs
Discussion on the Standing Advisory Committee and the proposed Chair, Vice Chair and members of the SAC.

Public Safety and Legal Committee
Chair: Awet Eyasu
Vice Chair: Debra Johnson
Jamie Carroll
Mayor Burks

Housing and Infrastructure Committee
Co-Chair: Jamie Carroll
Vice Chair: Laura Hopkins
Debra Johnson
Mayor Burks

Community Development Committee
Chair: Debra Johnson
Vice Chair: Awet Eyasu

Transportation and Environment Committee
Chair: Awet Eyasu
Vice Chair: Laura Hopkins

Marketing and Civic Innovation Committee
Chair: Ahmed Hassan
Vice Chair: Debra Johnson
Mayor Burks 

Equity, Inclusion, and Opportunity
Chair: Laura Hopkins
Vice Chair: Debra Johnson
Mayor Burks

Debra Johnson made a motion to approve the 2021 Standing Advisory Committee members with the inclusion of the Mayor on the Marketing & Civic Innovation Committee. Awet Eyasu seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (4,0).

G2) Public Hearing: Conditional use permit request for the property located at 1051 Montreal Road Suites B & C.
Shawanna Qawiy briefly explain the purpose for the item as a request from Mohommad Bilal Khattak for a conditional use permit for the property located at 1051 Montreal Road, Suites B & C, zoned I, Light Industrial Clarkston, GA 30021, for used a coin laundromat.

conditional use permit application request shall be heard at public hearings to determine whether or not the applicants proposed conditional use would generally be in the public interest. In considering whether a proposed conditional use is in the public interest, the mayor and city council shall consider the following, among other relevant factors: (1) Whether the conditional use would be injurious to the use and enjoyment of the environment or of other property in the immediate vicinity or diminish and impair property values within the surrounding neighborhood; (2) Whether the proposed conditional use would increase local or state expenditures in relation to cost of servicing or maintaining neighboring properties; (3) Whether the establishment of the conditional use would impede the normal and orderly development of surrounding property for uses predominant in the area; and (4) Whether the location and character of the proposed conditional use would be consistent with a desirable pattern of development for the locality in general.

The Planning and Zoning Board recommended approval with staff’s seven (7) recommendations amending the hours under condition number 7.
1. The business shall only be limited to operating as a coin laundromat.
2. There shall be no long term or overnight parking.
3. The owner/tenant shall adhere to Sections 12-20 Disorderly Conduct and 12-28 Noise.
4. The business shall not emit noise, vibrations, smoke, gas, fumes, or odors that would be
a nuisance to the adjacent properties.
5. The business shall comply with the Department of Natural Resources-Environmental
Protection Division (EPD) policies/ procedures and laws relative to air/land quality,
environmental pollutants disposal.
6. The owner/tenant shall adhere to all City requirements for plan review, permitting, and
business licensing.
7. Hours of operation shall be 6am -11pm, Monday thru Sunday.

The Mayor opened the public hearing.
No speakers in favor or opposition to the request
The Mayor closed the public hearing.

Discussion that the location for a laundry mat will be helpful for the surrounding apartment communities. 

Debra Hopkins made a motion to approve the request for Conditional use permit for property located at 1051 Montreal Rd Ste B and C zoned I, Light Industrial, for used a coin laundromat, with the 7 condition as listed by Planning & Zoning Board. Laura Hopkins seconded the motion. 
Awet Eyasu asked if the applicant was agreeable to for the seven conditions?  Mohommad Bilal Khattak stated he was in agreement with the seven conditions for the conditional use permit. 
The  vote was called and the motion carried (4, 0). 

G3) Consider a request for a shared or reduced parking agreement from Mr. Henock Mekonnen for a proposed retail development at 3884 E. Ponce de Leon Avenue with the current parking (property) for a gas station located at 3874 E. Ponce de Leon Avenue.
Shawanna Qawiy detailed the request.   Under Code Section 1108, the Mayor and City Council shall review and approve requests to reduce the parking requirements through a shared or reduced parking arrangement. Staff has recommended approving the reduced/shared parking agreement of 33 spaces with the conditions that the applicant adheres to Section 1108: Shared or reduced parking standards, the NC-1 zoning district requirements for permitted uses, and all development, landscaping and permitting requirements for construction of the new building.

Awet Eyasu made a motion to approve the request for a shared or reduced parking agreement from Mr. Henock Mekonnen for a proposed retail development at 3884 E. Ponce de Leon Avenue with the current parking (property) for a gas station located at 3874 E. Ponce de Leon Avenue. Debra Johnson seconded the motion.
A vote was called and the motion carried (4,0).

G4) Review/Discuss Approval of Request from CORE (Community Organized Relief Effort) for COVID-19 Testing and/or Vaccine Funding.  
Mr. Gomez stated the City had received a funding request from CORE to provide for covid testing.

City Council discussion and consensus that the City appreciates the services they have previously provided, but that the City does not have the additional resources at this point, to financially support the request.  
Council consensus this is a discussion only item and that no action is to be taken.

G5) Encourage plants options on food menu and all City events  
Awet Eyasu stated this is item is to encourage more plant options in the City.  The City will mandate that any future City sponsored events will have plant options and we will encourage local businesses to have plant options on their menus. 

Awet Eyasu made a motion to adopt the resolution encouraging more plant and mandate a plant option for city events. Jamie Carroll seconded the motion. 
Vote: A vote was called and the motion carried (4, 0). 

G6) Proclamation for Black History Month
Mayor Burks discussed that she placed the proclamation on the agenda to ensure that Black History Month is acknowledged in the City. 

Debra Johnson made a motion to approve the Proclamation for Black History Month. Awet Eyasu seconded the motion.   A vote was called and the motion carried (4, 0).

G7) A Resolution to Refer to the Housing Committee to make policy recommendations for affordable housing solutions and develop a process for the housing trust fund.
Mayor Burks stated the purpose of this item is to do the follow up work and to make sure we are compliant and pro-active on affordable housing and to make sure a policy is in-place. 

Debra Johnson made a motion to adopt a resolution to refer to the housing committee to make policy recommendations for affordable housing solutions and develop a process for the housing trust fund
Awet Eyasu seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried ( 4, 0). 

H.    EXECUTIVE SESSION to Discuss a Legal Matter
Awet Eyasu made a motion to go into executive session to discuss a legal matter. Laura Hopkins seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (4,0).
 
Awet Eyasu made a motion to close the Executive Session and to go into open session.  Laura Hopkins seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (4,0)

I.    ADJOURNMENT: 

Jamie Carroll made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Debra Johnson seconded the motion.  A vote was called and the motion carried (4, 0).