BOC upholds planning board recommendations
By Tara DeRock Mahoney
Senior Staff Writer
The Morgan County Board of Commissioners at its regular meeting unanimously upheld all recommendations made in December by the Planning Commission.
The commissioners agreed to a conditional use request made by Centennial Baptist Church for a covered picnic shelter and barbecue pit across Brownwood Road from its main campus. No one from the public spoke against the project, which was subsequently approved after a motion made by Commissioner Sammy Cathey.
Commissioners also approved a variance submitted by resident Johnny Hubbard to the county’s law that no secondary structures on a property exceed 40 percent in size of the primary dwelling. The board gave permission for Hubbard to install a second manufactured home on the property near Sewell Church and Newborn Roads, under the condition that Hubbard install a new driveway on the property that will not be shared with neighbors.
The board of commissioners also approved a conditional use permit by Union Springs Baptist Church for the construction of a new church building on Oil Mill Road near West Main Street, just outside the city limits of Rutledge. Several neighbors spoke in opposition to the project, citing their understanding that they had moved into a quiet, rural area on Oil Mill Road and their fears that a church could change all that.
“I really oppose the church—it’s breaking my heart to think I’m going to have 200 or 300 neighbors,” said nearby property owner Jennifer Keesel. But commissioner Ellen Warren opined that churches help build communities. “In my experience, churches have made good neighbors—their business hours are one day a week, and I like the business that they are in,” said Warren.
Printed in the January 8, 2008 edition.