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City Council approves plan for 152 townhomes on Jones Mill Rd.

The city noise ordinance was reinstated, Azul Tex-Mex Express was granted an alcohol license and development on Jones Mill Road will proceed with the approval of a preliminary subdivision PLAT for the construction of 152 townhome units. Click on the image to read about all City business covered.
Preliminary subdivision plan for 152 townhome units on Jones Mill Road

Mayor Jonathan McCollar called the Tuesday April 16, 2024 City Council meeting to order at 5:30 P.M., after Mayor Pro Tem Shari Barr shared a heartfelt invocation and led the pledge of allegiance. 

The council approved the subdivision plan for 152 town home units on Jones Mill Road and approved Statesboro's Comprehensive Plan to be sent to the Coastal Regional Commission for review.

Continue reading for all business covered in the meeting.

3. Recognitions/Public Presentations

A) Presentation of a Proclamation recognizing April 2024 as Fair Housing Month.

The mayor read a proclamation in recognition of the Fair Housing Act of April 11 1968, that ended housing discrimination. In recognition of these values the, the mayor and the city of Statesboro proclaims April as the month of Fair Housing, bestowing the certificate upon members of the Statesboro Board of Realtors.

L-R: Mayor Jonathon McCollar, Denise Mikell, Ronald Love and Jeff Raines. DeWayne Grice

B) Presentation of a Certificate to former Council Member Venus Mack for her Completion of the Robert E. Knox, Jr. Municipal Leadership Institute.

Mayor McCollar says that the city council works hard to receive credentials so as to move the city forward in progress, and the city of Statesboro recognizes former council member Venus Mack’s great achievement in earning this certificate.

Mayor McCollar presenting award to Venus Mack along with City Council members and Mack's family members. DeWayne Grice

4. Public Comments (Agenda Item): No public comment

5. Consideration of a Motion to approve the Consent Agenda: APPROVED

A) Approval of Minutes

a) 04-02-2024 Council Minutes

b) 04-02-2024 Executive Session Minutes

B) Consideration of a motion to approve surplus and disposition of a 1997 Ford F-350 in the Public Utilities Department.

Public Hearing

APPROVED 6. Public hearing and consideration of a motion to approve: APPLICATION RZ 24-03-01: Nikira Boggs requests a Zoning Map Amendment from the LI (Light Industrial) zoning district to the MX (Mixed-Use) zoning district on approximately 0.31 acres of property in order develop a walk-up restaurant at 193 West Main Street (Tax Parcel # S18 000178 000).

Kathy Field, director of planning and development, says the property is currently a vacant restaurant, and the zoning updates of the unified development code has restricted the use of this property as a restaurant. City staff recommended approval with conditions that can be found in the meeting packet.

“Just tell them to fix my plate,” said McCollar after the approval.

from meeting packet


APPROVED - 7. Public hearing and consideration of a motion to approve: APPLICATION SUB 24-03-02: Simcoe Investment Group, LLC requests a Preliminary Subdivision PLAT on approximately 26.32 acres of property in order to construct 152 townhome units on Jones Mill Road (Tax Parcel # MS84000002 001).

Field said that currently, the site is already under development and being timbered. Staff recommended approval with conditions that are found on the meeting packet.

A representative of EMC engineering said that the developers have already received approval from all entities. Culverts under Jones Mill were not functioning and improvements are being made for the storm water issue pointed out by the adjacent property.

A representative of the neighboring Bel Air neighborhood, Stephen Rigg, says that white oaks and gum trees have been cut beyond what was planned, and the development is encroaching into the ponds. A spill well that has been blocked by a downed tree cannot be accessed by the residents.

Tom Mixon, another resident, said that he was present at the last planning meeting where it was established that 20 foot buffers would separate this development from the other subdivision. He says that only the  right of way is left after the developer cut down the tree line buffer.

Sydna Davidson commented that lots of homes are being built but there have been no changes in traffic patterns. She proposes a new traffic light to curb increasing accidents and dangers due to new developments.

Assistant City Engineer David Moyer confirmed that buffers are required and must have a substantial thickness.

Mayor Pro Tem Shari Barr thanked these folks for showing up and said she is disappointed in the trees being taken down. “I share your frustration,” Barr said in her sadness about the wildlife being disturbed. She told the resident to keep coming to meetings and keep the city council held accountable.

Mixon asked if the apartments are low income housing and if they will depreciate his home value.

City Manager Penny said that action has not been taken and he will be able to answer this question after action has been taken.

Councilwoman Paullete Chavers asked the council if resident Davidson’s concern about the traffic impact would be able to be alleviated.

Staff replied that GDOT surveys would need to be conducted before a new signal could be installed

Mayor Pro Tem Barr says that city workers are professionals and are here to protect and mitigate such issues. The more questions we ask the more we learn that. She assures us that city employees are doing their best to make good decisions for the city.

Davidson approached the podium again to comment that Georgia Southern traffic, morning work traffic, and high speeds have caused congestion and extra risk. She says a petition has been started to install speed bumps to prevent the dangers.

Mayor McCollar acknowledged the growth and needs of development in the city. “We want to make sure we maintain the integrity of our community,” he said while adding that we also have to move along with the next generations. “Bel Air we hear you, we feel you,” said Mayor McCollar.

Mayor McCollar reminded attendees that the fair housing month proclamation was just passed and that we are all neighbors. “What maintains our city is the people…we all make this city up.”

from meeting packet


APPROVED 8. Public hearing and consideration of a motion to approve:

a. APPLICATION RZ 24-03-03: Ogeechee Area Hospice requests a Zoning Map Amendment from the O/R-15 (Office and Business/Single-Family Residential) zoning district to the O (Office & Business) Zoning District on approximately 0.49 acres of property in order develop an expansion to the existing hospice business at 1001 East Inman Street (Tax Parcel # S18 000178 000).

b. APPLICATION V 24-03-04: Ogeechee Area Hospice requests a Variance from the setback requirements of Section 2.3.3 – Dimensional Standards of the Unified Development Code, in order to construct a proposed hospice accessory building at 1001 East Inman Street (Tax Parcel # S18 000178 000).

Field said the property is currently a vacant lot. The request is to construct temporary housing for patient’s families with additional storage. Staff recommended approval with conditions found in the meeting packet. 

Doug Lambert, Ogeechee Area Hospice president, spoke of his support for their development, saying that the building would be like a Ronald Mcdonald house facility with extra warehouse space for medical records.

Barr says one of the happiest things she's ever been a part of is working for the formation of the Ogeechee Area Hospice.

from meeting packetfrom meeting packet

APPROVED 9. Public hearing and consideration of a motion to approve: APPLICATION RZ 24-03-05: Burbank Pointe, LLC requests a Zoning Map Amendment from the R-15 (Single-Family Residential) zoning district to the R-6 (Single-Family Residential) zoning district on approximately 0.32 acres of property in order develop an infill cottage court 231 East Main Street (Tax Parcel # S39 000054 000).

The property is a recently vacated vegetable market. Staff recommended approval with conditions that can be found in the meeting packet.

from meeting packet

APPROVED 10. Public hearing and consideration of a motion to approve application for an alcohol license in accordance with the City of Statesboro alcohol ordinance Sec. 6-13 (a):

Azul Tex-Mex Express, LLC 408 South Main Street Statesboro, Ga 30458 - License Type: Restaurant

The council clarified that the restaurant was outdoors.

APPROVED 11. Public hearing and consideration of a motion to approve: Resolution 2024-09: A Resolution to transmit the Statesboro Comprehensive Plan to the Coastal Regional Commission for the 40 day comment and review period. View the work session packet for more information about The Comprehensive Plan Updates.

APPROVED 12. Consideration of a motion to approve Resolution 2024-10: A Resolution authorizing the destruction of certain municipal records.

City Manager Penny said these records have outlived their usefulness and requests permission to destroy the records.

APPROVED 13. Consideration of a Motion to approve Resolution 2024-11: A Resolution to re-certify the City of Statesboro as a Georgia Certified City of Ethics.

The ethics by which the council and individual members will subscribe to include:

  • Serving others and not oneself
  • To use resources with efficiency and economy
  • Attempt to treat all people fairly
  • Use the power of their position for the well being of their constituents
  • Attempt to create an environment of honesty, openness and integrity.

APPROVED 14. Consideration of a motion to approve Ordinance 2024-02: recodification of Article IV: Noise of Chapter 38.

Staff is in the process of updating the ordinance upon this approval.

APPROVED 15. Consideration of a motion to approve a 50 year ground lease with the Food Bank, Inc. for 3.75 acres located at the intersection of Northside Drive and Miller Street.

In order for the foodbank to secure financing to complete construction, this ground lease must be in place, according to City Manager Penny.

16. Consideration of a motion to conditionally approve an application submitted by Centurion Property 111 South, LLC dba South Apartments for funding under the Security Enhancement Incentive Program in the amount of $19,969.50, subject to the fulfillment of all eligibility requirements.

The program provides funding to assist property owners with the installation of security enhancement systems such as cameras or access control systems.

This is the first grant application the city has received, which would be covering 50% of their costs for the security enhancement. The grant has a budget of around $80,000.

Penny recognized Olympia Gaines and Police Chief Mike Broadhead’s role in the success of this program.

APPROVED 17. Consideration of a motion to approve an award of contract to Hudson and Hubbard Contractors in the amount of $131,530.00 for the Averitt Center for the Arts façade renovation. If approved, this project will be funded using 2019 SPLOST funds.

The façade of the Averitt Center for the Arts is in need of repairs as the stucco is failing structurally. This is the second time this project has been out to bid and the opportunity has been sent to numerous contractors. This project is urgent in nature as it is located above the entrance to the theater portion of the Arts Center. If approved, it is expected the construction will commence within a few weeks with a completion timeline of approximately 30 days.

APPROVED 18. Consideration of a motion to execute a Professional Services Agreement with Hussy, Gay, Bell Engineering, Inc. in the amount not to exceed $374,100.00 to provide design, bid, and contract administration services for the extension of sanitary sewer and water to the Burkhalter Rd / Railroad Bed Rd area. To be paid for with operating revenues and 2019 SPLOST as approved in CIP Projects WWD-196 & WWD-197.

As part of the City’s plan to extend water and sewer into high growth potential areas the decision was made to initiate the process to install water and sewer mains in the Burkhalter Road / Railroad Bed Road area. This location was identified many years ago in the City’s master plan for water and sewer as a high priority area, due to its close proximity to shopping centers, recreational facilities and Georgia Southern. This location is even more desirable now due to its location on the south side of town making travel to the Hyundai plant more convenient. Over the past several months we have received many inquiries from developers about properties in this area and we feel that dollars spent on utility upgrades will produce a good return on our investment. 

19. Other Business from City Council - No further business

20. City Managers Comments

“It's time to do our budget,” said city manager Penny.

There will be a budget session on May 14 from 2-6 P.M. The first city council meeting in June  will host a public hearing, and the matter will be voted on at the second meeting.

Mayor Pro Tem mentioned that the Tree Board applications are opening.

21. Public Comments (General)

Mike Price, owner of Cotton's Tire on North Main Street says the neighboring business to his own, is using his property for parking; not the owners but their patrons because there is not enough room for all of the cars. He is asking for clarity on the ordinance that can help him mitigate this frustration.

22. Consideration of a Motion to enter into Executive Session to discuss “Personnel Matters”

“Real Estate” and/or “Potential Litigation” in accordance with O.C.G.A 50-14-3(b)

The council entered executive session around 6:50 P.M. Upon returning, no action was taken and the meeting was adjourned at 7:13 P.M.

Click here to review the agenda and supporting documents

Live stream of the meeting below