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Packed House

City Council entertained a packed house Thursday  6/13/02.
More than 120 residents turned out to voice their opinion on the
proposed zoning text amendments for R-1, R-1B, R-2, C-1 & C-2,
a proposed text Amendment eliminating scheduled Public Hearings for the Planning Commission, and the continued liquidation of City owned property at whole sale prices.

Visitors voiced many opinions.
Requests were made for Council  to slow down the wholesale changes proposed to the current  Zoning Code. David Ason spoke about the City's responsibility to its citizens. He asked for Zoning Laws that protect  citizens.
...when a community has to resort to neighbor suing neighbor to uphold the zoning law, the City isn't doing its job...
the house was on its feet! Mayor Parker gaveled the crowd
as strong applause erupted supporting Mr. Ason's request.
Some folks were of the opinion that  notice for the public hearings
was not handled appropriately. Mr. Bubba  Hughes, City of Tybee Attorney, recalled that during the last 9 years that he has served as Consul, advertising was more extensive for Zoning Map Amendments:
-public lands were posted -massive mailings were conducted to notify effected property owners. In his opinion,
this wasn't accomplished by staff prior to this evening's meeting.

A recommendation was made to table for further study:
the modifications to C-1 (Section 4-050 Commercial Districts)
the elimination of C-2  (Section 3-090)
the elimination  of R-1B (Section 3-090)
the alteration of lot size for R-1  (12,000 - 4,500)
the alteration of lot size for R-2
(duplex minimum lot size increased from. 6,750 to 9,000).
Council voted to approve the motion to table 5-1
(youmans voted against).

Richard Barrow directed the City Manager
to work with the City Attorney
to identify Conflicts of Interest that exist for Council members.
Barrow inquired about the City's policy regarding
Conflict of Interest:
Is up to date?
Is it enforced when it applies to council members?

Much discussion then followed
about the elimination of Section 5-060 subsection "E",
Public Hearing Requirements - Scheduling.

Councilman Crawford reassured citizens
that this was an attempt to bring about zoning "justice" ,
by decreasing the hoops a zoning request must go through.
Others saw the move as an attempt to limit public comment to the City's
zoning process.
Planning Commission recommended to table
the elimination of subsection "E"  by unanimous vote.
Jason Buelterman urged his fellow Council men to heed the
Commissions recommendation.
The motion failed, 4-2.
(for: Crawford, Burke, Youmans & Reynolds)
(against: Barrow & Buelterman).

The Greenspace issue was addressed by requesting that
the City Attorney outline a standardized process.
Greenspace Liquidation could occur only after appraisals
were obtained to determine fair market value
from one of 3 City approved appraisers.

Residents expressed concern  about :
-the sale of any citizen owned property
-whether the City would ever be able to purchase any considerable amount

of land considering the fact it was selling land for $1 or $2 sq. ft.
-increased drainage needs in developed neighborhoods

There was much discussion during the 3 hour meeting.
Many residents hung in there until they were ushered out of the

Stay tuned...


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