SCBC disagree on rezoning request, resulting in a killed motion

During the recent Stephens County Board of Commissioners meeting, Tuesday night, the commissioners held a final public hearing for a land rezoning and conditional use request.

Both requests were presented before the commission by Chad Singleton, regarding two parcels of land located off of Hwy 145, at Ridgeland Road.

Singleton requested that the commission consider rezoning both parcels from agriculture residential to agriculture intensive, in order to build two breeder houses for a poultry farm.

“I represent the clients who own the property that are seeking to have it approved to build the poultry houses,” Singleton said.

However, there were several residents who live on Ridgeland Road who had concerns regarding the anticipated breeder houses.

One in particular, Joe Sticher, is the property owner adjacent to the parcels to be rezoned, who says one of the breeder houses will be less than 300 feet from his front porch.

“I just heard it mentioned that the houses were to be placed in the center of the property as much as possible, but I just got this from Mr. Singleton, that shows the houses are nowhere near the center of the property,” Sticher said. “The houses are no more than 300 feet from my house.”

Commissioner Michelle Ivester suggested planting trees to obstruct the view of the breeder houses from Sticher’s property; however, Sticher felt that the only solution would be to deny the request.

Some other citizens approached the podium for public comments regarding the breeder houses, all of which repeated the same sentiment, requesting the commissioners to deny the request because of increase traffic, smell and the impact of the value of their properties.

A motion was made by Ivester to approve both request; however, no one else seconded the motion, causing the motion to fail.

Later in the meeting, Chairman Debbie Whitlock advised the board that she would like to open the discussion back up regarding the rezoning requests, stating that she was unaware she was allowed to vote.

“I’m so sorry, I apologize, I didn’t realize and I’m sorry, call me ignorant [but] I would have seconded the motion, but as Chair for some reason, I don’t know why, but I thought I couldn’t do it,” Whitlock said.

When Whitlock made a motion to revisit the topic, her motion died for a lack of a second.