by Jason Wright / Appen Newspapers
October 16, 2008 MILTON -
In a vote that matched exactly the contentious one Sept. 15, Milton's City Council gave the green light for building permits to parcels granted sewer in the service delivery map it approved three weeks prior.That means if the land was included in the sewerable portions of the approved map and you have a sewer permit from Fulton County, you're OK to move forward with the city.Only Fulton County sewer permits dated before Oct. 6 will be honored. Anything past that date will be used as leverage to have Fulton County work with the city on ironing out the differences in their sewer plans.
No intergovernmental agreement (IGA) for sewer service has been reached between the bodies.If the agenda item sounds like housekeeping, well, it was — on a decision council members Alan Tart, Tina D'Aversa and Julie Zahner Bailey fought bitterly.They voted against this measure as well, as it carried out the decision for sewerage they opposed and moved forward without an IGA. They were defeated again."The passing of the map was a threshold," said City Attorney Ken Jarrard, who brought the item to council. "It is not official public policy [because the IGA has not been worked out yet], but it was the will of the council. That's all I have to go on."
Originally, the item was supposed to be only for Braeburn in Crabapple, a 61-acre mixed used development where work was stopped in early May due to concerns a wall was built in the middle of federally and state-protected waters. However, the state Environmental Protection Division found in mid-September the wall was not in violation and building could continue
"Braeburn needs the permits for it's commercial portions, because it has tenants who wanted to walk," said Community Development Director Alice Wakefield.The company also wanted to build four model homes on the site and has sewer lines already in the ground from Fulton County, she said.A majority of council asked that the Braeburn permit item be expanded to all parcels included on previously embattled sections of the map so as to increase efficiency. Zahner Bailey opposed such a "global" decision."Braeburn meets the criteria, but what about the others?" she asked. "Urgency for one development doesn't mean urgency for all. There is a tangible leap from Braeburn to this blanket approach."
Councilwoman Karen Thur-man disagreed."We're wasting a tremendous amount of money and staff time," she said. "It's costing us taxpayer money every time we discuss this."
Tart summed it up best."Could we possibly vote against the map but for this?" he asked. "Basically it's the same vote as the 15th."The item to authorize the permits was then voted in 4-3.