BOC says no to smaller lot sizes in Chestatee

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – The Dawson County Board of Commissioners unanimously denied a request by Brian Ferris and Chestatee Development Corporation to amend Chestatee subdivision’s Master Plan during Tuesday’s meeting.

Ferris wanted to change the master plan that called for lots in the Linkside section to have 100 foot widths to allow 70-foot widths to accommodate 11 more lots in that section. There are 46 lots in Linkside and 34 remain unsold. Homeowners in Chestatee have strongly objected to the request, saying it would decrease the value of their homes and create additional traffic congestion.

Ferris’ attorney Ethan Underwood argued that his client didn’t need approval of the Board to change the master plan. “The number of lots per unit shall not require further approval by the Planning Commission or Board of Commissioners,” he said. “That’s the law. That’s the master plan.”

In other business, the Board agreed to a request by Georgia State Patrol Post 37 to purchase two radar units and two laser units to equip the patrol cars assigned to the Dawson County area at a cost of $8,890. Commissioner Chris Gaines pointed out that GSP’s law enforcement effort has raised $83,118 for  the county this year.

Commissioners voted unanimously to allow Tax Commissioner Nicole Stewart to write off $73,237.38 in uncollectable taxes due to businesses closing or moving out of county.

The Board also agreed to purchase 16 new fire hydrants at a total cost of $55,440 for Nix Bridge Road, Overlook Drive, Woodland Circle and North Seed Tick Road.

Fire Chief/Public Safety Director Danny Thompson requested the Board appoint Lucas Ray as interim Emergency Management Agency Director while he completes courses required for him to gain Certified EMA status. Commissioners, instead, chose to appoint Thompson as the interim director.

The Fiscal Year 2019 contract with Legacy Link was renewed at a cost of $337,901 and commissioners unanimously approved the Title VI plan for Dawson County Transit.

The Board also approved the following appointments: Kathryn Reagan Smith and Gail Smith (Library Board); Brian Trapnell (Industrial Building Authority); Brian Trapnell and Christie Haynes Moore (Joint Development Authority).

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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BOC delays vote on Chestatee variance

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DAWSONVILLE, Ga. – The Dawson County Board of Commissioners tabled a variance request by Chestatee Development Corporation Thursday to gain a better understanding of the legal complexities surrounding the issue.

The petitioner has asked for a variance to the master plan for Chestatee subdivision that would allow Brian Ferris, the property owner, to build lots with 70-foot widths instead of 100-foot widths, thus allowing 11 additional lots in the Linkside section of Chestatee.

The vote to table was unanimous and followed a 10-minute, back-and-forth discussion between County Attorney Lynn Frey and Ethan Underwood, the lawyer for the petitioner.

Dave Pollack was one of six Chestatee homeowners who spoke in opposition to the variance.

Attorney Ethan Underwood

“Linkside was originally marketed as luxury homes on half-acre lots starting at $600,000,” he said. “The quick math that I did shows we will lose 20-30 percent (home value) not only in Linkside but in all Chestatee if this goes through.”

Loss of home value was the issue most often mentioned by homeowners who spoke in opposition but traffic was another concern.

Michelle Pyne expressed concern about traffic safety, especially at the entrance to the Linkside section. “Fireside Lane is the only entry into Linkside,” she said. “Everyone living in or visiting Linkside must navigate the intersection of Fireside Lane and Fireside Drive. The golf cart path crosses that intersection and it has already caused some serious safety concerns. The intersection is also about 30-40 feet from the swimming pool, tennis courts and basketball courts so that adds to the foot traffic there. Adding at least 22 more cars, if not more, to the master plan for Linkside would certainly make those serious concerns even more.”

Frey questioned Underwood about where the authority to modify the master plan comes from.

“Our assertion is the master plan references the requirement for a covenant and the covenant states the declarant has the authority to modify those lots,” Underwood said. “Our position, as laid out in our reservation of rights, is that specific approval supersedes a general provision of the land use resolution.”

In other decisions, the Board:

  • Accepted the results of the Fiscal Year 2017 financial audit by Rushton Company;
  • Ratified the Georgia Trauma Commission Grant that will fund the purchase of emergency equipment for ambulances;
  • Disposal of four climate control units for the Detention Center;
  • Approved a list of surplus items to be sold on Govdeals.com;
  • Approved a design/build contract with Charles Black Construction in the amount of $2,644,127 for the new Fleet/Public Works complex;
  • Approved a special event business license for Carol Stream Amusements, Inc. Carnival to operate in the parking lot of North Georgia Premium Outlets. The vote was 3-1 with Commissioner Julie Hughes-Nix opposed;
  • Approved a site plan for John Megel Chevrolet to build a used car lot on its property;
  • Approved the 2018 Land Use District Map;
  • Approved the re-appointment of Joey Bearden to the Department of Family and Children Services board.
  • Approved moving the next regular meeting to July 3.

 

Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. FYN attracts 300,000+ page views per month, 3.5 million impressions per month and approximately 15,000 viewers per week on FYNTV.com and up to 60,000 Facebook page reach. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com

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