Coweta Commission

All souls seeks approval for new church

by Sarah Fay Campbell

When All Souls Church of God’s plans to build on property the church owned on Buddy West Road were denied by the Coweta County Board of Commissioners, church members took their case to federal court.

The commissioners voted to deny a conditional use permit in 2010, and the church sued in 2011.

Last year, as the result of a settlement in the case, the commissioners granted the permit.

Neighbors continued to oppose the church plans, and now All Souls is planning to locate their church in a place where they are not opposed.

The church hopes to have its first permanent location on East Newnan Road, in the former headquarters of the Coweta Water and Sewerage Authority.

A conditional use permit request for the church is on the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting of the Coweta County Board of Commissioners. No one spoke in opposition during the public hearing before the Coweta Board of Zoning Appeals earlier this month.

“Considering the fact that the people really did not want us in the area, we thought it might be best to look for something different,” said Pastor Curtis Connally.

There are two buildings and a modular unit on the property, as well as plenty of parking. “In the long run, it would be a lot less expense than it would be to just build a church from the ground up,” Connally said.

He said there has been some vandalism on the Buddy West property. There is a workshop/barn building and the door was kicked in twice; a man was also found on the property. “We’re not accusing anybody,” Connally said. But “as a pastor, I want people to feel safe when they come to church.”

The Buddy West Road property is now for sale.

Connally thinks the church can be more successful in the East Newnan Road location. “We’re expecting our church to grow, we think that may be a good start,” he said. “It’s really conducive to what we want and we can have the peace of mind that we are in an area where we don’t think we’ll get any objections."

Other items on the agenda include:

• A public hearing on the proposed rezoning of 120 acres on Greentop Road to the county’s RI-B Single Family Residential Infill District. Applicant Jim Mottola is proposing 226 homes on the property, with a minimum lot size of 8,500 square feet/0.2 acres. The development would be served with public sewer.

Building that many homes will require multiple entrances. Several proposed future connections to other properties are shown on the plat, but with just the main entrance on Greentop Road, only 49 homes could be built.

The rezoning has garnered significant opposition from residents in the Heritage Hills and Lake Hills neighborhoods, which it adjoins, and more than 60 audience participation forms had been submitted by Friday afternoon.

• A public hearing on the request of AT&T/Providence Real Estate to rezone property at 2270 Smokey Road for a cell tower.

• A presentation of the county’s 2013 audited financial statements.

• A public hearing on the exemption of certain county vehicles from state labeling/decal requirements.

• A request to purchase ambulance remounts.

• Final fiscal year 2013 budget amendments.

• Adoption of a “mass fatality plan” for Coweta County.

• A request for vested development rights for property on Summers McKoy Road.

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