12/20/12 — Council holds public hearings

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Council holds public hearings

By Ty Johnson
Published in News on December 20, 2012 1:46 PM

The Goldsboro City Council held five public hearings at its Monday night meeting.

One person spoke during a hearing on a request for a conditional use permit for the former Teasers Nightclub property. The request was for authorization to open an Internet cafe at the site. Kristie Montague, who was representing Carolina Tractors, which is located nearby, spoke against the request, saying such an establishment would increase the potential for criminal activity in the area.

Her opposition to the permit was noted, but a decision by the state Supreme Court last week likely loomed in the considerations of the city Planning Commission, which recommended denial of the request. The high court upheld a ban on such businesses, saying they are gambling establishments that violate state law against gambling. But the denial was based on the property not meeting certain requirements -- the applicant had asked for setback, landscaping and parking requirements to be modified.

Planning Director Randy Guthrie pointed out to City Council members that the recommendations, including the Internet cafe, wouldn't come before the council for action until Jan. 7. He said by then his department should know whether an injunction has been issued. He said there's also a chance the sweepstakes industry could alter its operations to make those businesses exempt from the ban.

In other hearings, the Planning Commission recommended approval of a rezoning request for Woodhaven Enterprises for its property on the southeast corner of the intersection of Gracie Place and Wayne Memorial Drive. The applicant plans to have that land's zoning code changed from residential to neighborhood business.

Also recommended for approval by the planning commission were measures surrounding the zoning and construction of a Sheetz location at the southeast corner of the intersection of U.S. 70 and N.C. 581.

The commission suggested approving the initial zoning (shopping center conditional district) and the site plan submitted for the convenience store/restaurant. The location is the second to be considered in Goldsboro in the past two months as the City Council approved another site plan for a Sheetz across from Walmart on Spence Avenue.

The commission recommended council adopt its sidewalk ordinance amendment to limit the city's sidewalk requirements to only instances where new construction is performed or where large renovations occur within areas deemed as sidewalk priority areas.

The commission's recommendations will be presented at the City Council's Jan. 7 meeting

The commission also approved two subdivision requests, although members asked for interconnectivity with the Glenn's Landing plat. The Jeffrey Deese plat was approved as requested.