Although no action could be taken, the Cherokee County Planning Commission held discussions on three rezoning cases during Monday night’s meeting, while also reviewing changes to policy.

The first case up for discussion Monday night was the request for a special use permit for land on Cumming Highway to allow for a commercial truck sales lot on the property.

At its public hearing meeting on June 4, the planning commission voted to recommend rezoning the land from residential to neighborhood commercial while approving tabling the special use permit until after the Cherokee County Board of Commissioners made a ruling on the case in July.

It was announced the applicants in these cases might request a postponement to the board of commissioners regarding the rezoning, and it was suggested that if the board approves this, the planning commission consider postponement on any decision on the special use permit.

Returning to a case that was remanded back to the planning commission by the board of commissioners, the planning commission talked about the request to rezone 240 acres on Mount Carmel Church Lane from agricultural to R-40 for the development of a residential subdivision. Recently, the applicant amended the request, changing from R-40 to R-60 and reducing the number of lots from 119 to 112, while also asking for two concurrent variances to reduce the side setback from 40 feet to 15 feet and shrinking the minimum lot width to 100 feet from 110 feet. While the commissioners agreed the site would be tough to develop in general, there were several concerns voiced during the discussion. It was noted that, in some places on the site layout plan, there were some houses that share a driveway, while slopes and creeks running through the parcel could present additional issues as well. The fact that some lots appeared to be relatively shallow was mentioned, and one commissioner even brought up how it felt like the applicant was asking for R-60 but, with the concurrent variances on the dimensions, it would still essentially be R-40.

Lastly, the commission reviewed the only new case on the agenda, a request to rezone just over one acre of land on Marble Quarry Road from R-40 to R-20 so the land could be divided into two smaller lots. During the discussion on this case, it was noted that the plans were to divide the land so a second house could be built at the site, but there were a few issues that were noted. Although an examination of the lot showed an additional septic tank for the future home would not be possible, the applicant has expressed the desire to continue moving forward. Along with the option of a septic tank not being possible, studies on local infrastructure showed that there were no sewer lines at the property, but some were located nearby and the possibility of them being extended to this parcel could potentially take place in the future. With all of this in mind, a belief that the property, if divided, might not be able to be built upon. One commissioner put forth the question, with the proposed new lot appearing to be non-buildable, if the commission should even hear the case. The answer came back that the case should be heard, but that the commissioners could take these concerns into account when making their decision for a recommendation.

Before adjourning, the planning commission took another look at some of the changes that could be approved for the policy manual, including how to proceed with cases when the applicant is not present at the public hearing. Among the changes were revising “every reasonable attempt” to contact these individuals to “a reasonable attempt” and including the phrase “including, but not limited to” when listing just causes on non-attendance.

The next meeting of the Cherokee County Planning Commission will be its public hearing meeting on Tuesday, July 2.

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