The Cherokee County Board of Commissioners approved calling for a public hearing to extend a development moratorium in the Hickory Flat community Tuesday night.
County development staff have been working on an area plan for the Hickory Flat area similar to that seen in the southwest portion of the county. A development moratorium was put into place while the area plan is in development. However, the moratorium currently in place for Hickory Flat is set to expire on March 16.
“The question is whether we wish to call a public hearing for the purposes of considering an extension of the Hickory Flat zoning moratorium,” Commission Chairman Harry Johnston said.
Commissioner Richard Weatherby put forth a motion to call for the hearing. Initially, the extension was suggested to run for 90 days, although Weatherby amended his initial motion, and the extension, if approved, would last until June 15 or until the small area plan was finalized and implemented, whichever came first. Commissioner Benny Carter provided a second to Weatherby’s motion, which then passed in a unanimous vote.
During the public comment portion of the meeting, the board heard from a handful of residents living in the vicinity of the planned roundabout at the intersection of Cox Road and Wylie Bridge Road who had concerns about the proposed changes.
“I just don’t see the real need, want or desire for a turning circle there,” Pat Hurley said. “You have a 100-year old farmhouse there, and it’s a nice landmark, and I hate to see it ruined with an obscure looking turning circle in front of the house.”
Hurley said there was a tree in the house’s front yard that has been estimated to be 400 years old and that it would be a travesty to put the roundabout at that location. He also said he had made plans to meet with Weatherby and County Engineer Jeff Morton on the matter.
“I hate to see the area really desecrated with a traffic circle,” Mark Johnson said. “There really is no need for a traffic circle there. If we just have to build one, all we’re asking is for fair negotiation of our property value there.”
Others who addressed the commissioners agreed with Hurley’s and Johnson’s comments in the circle not being needed and wondering about the purpose behind it.
“After the meeting’s over here, I’ll get with Mr. Hurley and we’ll set up something with ever how many of you guys want to meet, we’ll all get together and have a meeting. We’ll pick a day and a time next week, and we’ll all get together and hammer this out,” Weatherby said.
The Cherokee County Board of Commissioners also handled the following:
♦ The consent agenda, which included the acceptance of a permanent conservation easement for phase one of the Amberwood development, the approval of an amendment to the design agreement with Calco Engineering for roadway design services for the Huey Barnes Lane Improvement Project in the amount of $11,600, an automatic aid agreement with Bartow County for fire services, the acceptance of a surplus mobile unit from the Cherokee County School District that will be refurbished and turned into housing at Fire Station No. 29 and the acceptance of three ACCG County Internship Program Grant Agreements in the total amount of $7,752, as well as a related budget amendment, was approved.
♦ Weatherby appointed Dr. Dawn Mason to the county’s Animal Control Advisory Board for a term that will expire on Dec. 31, 2024.
♦ Johnston read out a proclamation, designating Feb. 23 as Rotary Day in Cherokee County as the organization celebrates its 116th birthday.
♦ The board approved the purchase of 20 TASER units and their holsters for the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office in the total amount of $28,356.20.
♦ An amendment to the agreement with the Cintas Corporation for uniform services for public works, parks and recreation and fleet management, extending the contract for an additional two years with the maximum annual amount not to exceed $37,400, was approved.
♦ A new Caterpillar CB7 asphalt roller for public works, along with the surplusing of a non-working roller for trade-in credit, was approved for purchase. The roller will be purchased from Yancey Brothers for a ♦ cost of $101,622.
♦ An amendment to the construction agreement with Bartow Paving for the Woodstock Road at Victory Drive Roundabout project was approved in the amount of $79,260.
♦ The board approved the transmittal of a funding application for the Cherokee Area Transportation Service in the maximum amount of $240,000.
♦ An agreement with Q.T. Contracting, doing business as Powers Heating and Air, to replace the HVAC unit at the Cherokee County jail in the amount of $812,652.50 was approved.
♦ A project framework agreement with the Georgia Department of Transportation, which identifies the responsibilities for both GDOT and the county for the design phase of the Georgia Highway 140 at Univeter Road Intersection Improvement Project, was approved.
♦ The board approved a proposal from GDOT to acquire 1.66 acres of land from the county as part of the project to widen Georgia Highway 20 between Georgia Highway 369 and Georgia Highway 372 for the amount of $248,300. County Manager Jerry Cooper said this land, totaling 6.14 acres, was purchased for $170,000 in 2012 for a future library facility, and recommended that $170,000 of the sale price be put back into the library SPLOST account.
♦ Approval was given for a new Senior Deputy Clerk position for the county probate court to be established.
♦ In an effort to protect the county’s image, including its seal and logos, the commissioners approved an ordinance to adopt a new county seal and county logo, along with providing guidelines for enforcement and penalties for their use without approval.