Published Saturday, January 21, 2012

Rezoning for used car lot denied

By Sarah Fay Campbell

The Newnan Times-Herald

On Thursday, the Coweta County Commissioners denied a rezoning that would allow used car sales alongside Highway 154 off Highway 34 East at Thomas Crossroads.

The request from A Better Way Ministries was to rezone 0.474 acres to be rezoned from RC, rural conservation, to C8, heavy commercial, for A Better Way Auto.

The property is located at the southwest corner of Highway 154 and Acres Circle at A Better Way in the former Catfish Hollow location. The tract would have been combined with other property for the car lot. However, several variances were required to make the project possible.

The planning department had recommended approval.

County Zoning Administrator Angela White said the planning department had done research and couldn't figure out why the subject property and another between it and the gas station on the corner were not rezoned commercial when the surrounding property had been rezoned.

Commission Chairman Rodney Brooks, who represents the fourth district where the property is located, voiced his concerns. The property is in the quality development corridor, but it will have reduced buffers and is a small lot.

"After looking at all the variances, seeing a C-8, to me, is a bit much for that piece," Brooks said. "It's going to be my recommendation to deny the request."

Brooks' motion was seconded by Paul Poole. The vote was 4-1, with Tim Lassetter opposed.

Because the rezoning was denied, the variance request was not heard.

In other meeting business:

• The board approved a conditional use permit request for an expansion of Southcrest Church.

• The board approved a conditional use permit for Sharpsburg Church of the Nazarene that will allow for an expansion.

• The board approved an agreement with TomTom North America for GIS data. The county has agreed to provide the GIS data to the GPS and mapping companies for free in order to help speed the updates reflecting the new names of Walt Sanders Memorial Drive (International Park) and Walt Sanders Memorial Court (Enterprise Court).

• The board approved a package alcohol license for Frazier's on U.S. 29 in Madras.

• The board set qualifying fees for the 2012 elections. Nearly all county officials will be up for election this year: three commissioners, the sheriff, the probate court judge, the tax commissioner, the chief magistrate judge, the clerk of superior court, the state court chief judge, the solicitor general, the coroner, and the surveyor.

• The board renewed a request to have a Coweta census tract be designated "less developed" by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs. The tract was previously designed less developed in 2010 and 2011.

"The Coweta County Development Authority is asking if the county commissioners will send a letter again asking that the designation be continued," said County Administrator Theron Gay. The designation is "very advantageous to any industry coming to the county. It allows additional job tax credits," Gay said.

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