By Stephanie Johns
Members of the Morgan County Planning Commission voted five to three in favor of recommending approval for a variance to a rear setback for property owned by William and Renee Pritchard on Apalachee Woods Trail in Buckhead.
Commissioner John McMahon recused himself from this discussion and vote.
As County Planning and Development Director Chuck Jarrell explained, county staff questioned whether the variance was necessary.
He showed two options that would require the house to be positioned on the property differently but one option would not require a variance and the other would only go over the setback by about six feet.
The Pritchards’ architect, Candace Carlson, was present to address the two options and to answer questions from the commissioners.
She said that the topography of the property would make such options expensive and that her clients would prefer their original positioning: “This is the better design solution for our clients.”
Commissioner Scott Campbell noted that there are similar circumstances all around the lake.
Commissioner Joe Cardwell agreed: “It looks like it fits in there.”
Carlson added that they had letters of support from the Pritchards’ neighbors and one neighbor, Steve Michael, was present to speak in support of the Pritchards’ request.