City Council Wrap-Up January 14, 2019

Tucker’s City Council held its first meeting of 2019 on Monday night at the City Hall Annex, hosting four public hearings and taking action on several issues.

The lone land use case saw approval of a Comprehensive Plan amendment and rezoning petition that will allow for creation of a 33-unit townhome development on Fuller Way. The plan, presented by The Ardent Companies, requires the 3.53-acre parcel, currently zoned as Local Commercial, to be rezoned as Medium Residential-2.

Council also voted 6-0 to approve an ordinance that will regulate donation dropboxes and collection bins in the City. The ordinance follows the trend of other jurisdictions who have banned or limited these receptacles, which often attract significant amounts of garbage and graffiti.

On the transportation front, Council voted 6-0 to amend the Strategic Transportation Master Plan to include $31,295 for a study of pedestrian safety across the City. The study will examine areas of need, as well as the incorporation of pedestrian safety devices like flashing beacons, additional signage and improved road markings. They then voted 5-1 to impose a 120-day moratorium on electronic scooters in the City. This is an issue potentially impacting public safety, as well as traffic flow. Council will examine the issue during the moratorium.

Council then voted 6-0 to set qualifying fees for this fall’s City Council elections at $420. This is the fee candidates will have to pay when the file paperwork to run for the Post 2 Council seats in Districts One, Two and Three. Qualifying will occur August 19-23 for the November 5 election.

A text amendment to the City Zoning Ordinance passed on a 6-0 vote. This approval facilitates a series of small changes to the Zoning Ordinance largely intended to bring it into accord with the City’s Comprehensive Plan, which was passed earlier this year. Council also approved a mid-year amendment to the Fiscal Year 2019 budget. This is due in large part to unexpectedly high revenues.

An anticipated vote on restrictions for short-term rentals did not happen, as the Council voted 5-0 to table the issue. The proposed restrictions would subject property owners who post their homes to sites like AirBnB and VRBO to collect hotel/motel taxes and require them to get a City business license, among other stipulations. Councilmembers expressed a desire to discuss the issue in more detail, possibly at a Council work session.

The next City Council meeting will be January 28 at 7 p.m. at the City Hall Annex (4228 First Avenue).

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