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Re-zoning approved for proposed assisted living center in Hinesville
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The City of Hinesville held their regular meeting Nov. 5, via the City’s Facebook Page.

Liberty County Consolidated Planning Commission Director Jeff Ricketson requested the approval to rezone three acres of land off E.G. Miles Parkway and Arlington Drive for the development of an Assisted Living Facility. Ricketson said the adjacent seven acres had already been rezoned from R-1 1 (residential single-family dwelling) to R-A-1 in May, and the developers are seeking to add the remaining three acres to their development plan. Ricketson said Magnolia Manor is planning for the development of an 80-bed senior living center. 

Curtis Velasco spoke during the public hearing saying he supported the assisted living center because he has visited the other Magnolia Manor locations and know they are run well and professional.

But Velasco did express concerns about the traffic at Arlington Drive and School House Road where several accidents have occurred in the past few years. He said he would like to see the entire site plan and development rotated 90 degrees to allow for better traffic routing and to improve greenspace.

Velasco’s wife  and other Arlington Subdivision homeowners also expressed their concern about the possible increase in traffic and said they think a traffic study should be completed to see how much it would cost to re-align Arlington Drive as well as what the impact might be after the development of the center.

Councilman Jason Floyd clarified that they are only approving the zoning change request but, all final development would be contingent on additional approval and studies completed.

Mayor and Council approved the request.

Mayor and Council approved the rezoning of .58 acres from R-to MH2 (Manufactured Home) on Strickland Road. Ricketson said this area of Strickland Road has various manufactured homes and the family is looking to remove their current dilapidated building and replace it with a newer manufactured home.

Mayor and Council approved a variance request from a homeowner on Page Lane to have an attached storage building on the side of the residence encroaching about six feet into the required 10-feet building side yard setback.

MaryBeth Deiters asked the Mayor and Council to approve the authorization to submit an amendment to the 2019-2023 Consolidated Plan and 2019 Annual Action Plan to the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, to enable the use of funds allocated through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).

Deiters said the first allocation from the CARES Act was for $135,513 and received on April 2. The City submitted an amendment to its Consolidated Plan and 2019 Annual Action Plan to access those funds for the purpose of economic development through a Small Business Recovery Grant.

She said the second allocation of $163,228 was received on Sept. 15, but To access the newly allocated funds, the City will need to submit an additional amendment to its Consolidated Plan and 2019 Annual Action plan that defines the proposed use of the funding. The approved amendment uses the funds to address both preventing the spread of COVID-19 and responding to the associated economic fallout through increased public services, including a

Hotel/Motel Voucher Program for unsheltered individuals and a Rent, Mortgage, and Utility Program for those facing economic hardships because of the virus; and a Small Business Recovery Grant. It is estimated that this funding will impact 22 businesses and 100 households.

It was approved unanimously.

Mayor and Council also approved the request for authorization to submit a grant application to the Gary Sinise Foundation, on behalf of the Hinesville Fire Department, for consideration under the First Responder Grant Program for $49,631.28. The First Responder Grant Program provides critical funding to first responders for emergency relief, training, and essential equipment. 

Assistant City Manager Ryan Arnold requested approval allowing the City to enter into a Marketing Agreement with HomeServe USA to participate in the National League

of Cities Service Line Warranty Program. The NLC and HomeServe have partnered to provide a water service line warranty program. The program offers residents in participating cities the ability to purchase affordable emergency repair service plans.

The program offers three services that the homeowner may choose to participate in:

· External water service line plan ($6.49 per month)

Provides up to $8,500 in annual coverage with unlimited service calls

· External sewer/septic line plan ($8.49 per month)

Provides up to $8,500 in annual coverage with unlimited service calls

· Interior plumbing and drainage plan ($9.99 per month)

In exchange, the City will receive a .50 monthly royalty per enrolled customer that is sent to the

city annually. The request was approved.

Ricketson informed Mayor and Council of the proposed new language to ease the City’s current restriction for tattoo businesses.

Ricketson current City codes make it nearly impossible to locate a tattoo business within the City of Hinesville. Ricketson said the current code has been in place since 1975 and that the tattoo industry has become a widely accepted practice among all social strata and especially among the younger generations. Ricketson said it would make sense to ease some of the restrictions that are currently placed on this type of activity. He said tattoo establishments are overseen by the local health department. The matter will be an action item at a future meeting.

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