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3 things from this week’s Cumming City Council meeting
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Employees of the Cumming Utilities Department stand with Mayor Troy Brumbalow and members of the Cumming City Council on Tuesday in recognition of a 20-year platinum award for the city’s Advanced Water Reclamation Facility. - photo by For the Forsyth County News

New fees for development in the city of Cumming, recognizing city personnel and a change impacting drive-thru windows for certain businesses were among items approved and discussed at Tuesday’s Cumming City Council meeting.

All votes are 5-0 unless otherwise noted.

Impact Fees

The council approved new impact fees at the meeting that will go toward paying for services that will see increased use with new development.

“We’re not increasing the level of service,” said City Attorney Kevin Tallant. “The idea is that it takes that much on a one-time basis for you to maintain that same level of service.”

Impact fees are a charge for development that helps cover the cost of increased demand on roads, infrastructure, services and amenities.

The fees will depend on the type of development and are broken down into roads, parks and public safety categories.

For residential units, which have fees assessed per dwelling, single-family detached units will pay a total of $4,589 – $2,104 for roads, $2,157 for parks and $328 for public safety – and multi-family units will pay a total of $3,002 comprised of $1,288 for roads, $1,488 for parks and $226 for public safety.

Commercial unit fees are assessed $1,000 per square feet of space.

Retail/commercial will pay a total of $4,867 – office $3,496, industrial/warehouse $535 and public/institutional $2,643.

There were no speakers during a required public hearing.

Drive-thru CUP

Businesses zoned in the city’s commercial business district will now need a permit to obtain a drive-thru window.

The council voted to require the permit instead of allowing businesses to have them from the start.

“It’s not eliminating them, it’s just saying they have to get approved,” said Mayor Troy Brumbalow. “If it’s a drive-thru Dunkin’ Donuts, it’ll probably get passed.”

There were no speakers during the public hearing.

Staff awarded

During the meeting, Cumming Utilities Director Jon Heard also had an opportunity to recognize employees of the Advanced Water Reclamation Facility with a 20-year platinum award for safety. He said the award was given to facilities that had not violated a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit in 20 years.

“This facility really has helped the growth of Forsyth County tremendously,” Heard said. “Without that facility, I don’t see how a lot of the development we’ve had and quality growth in this area would be possible.”

Heard said the facility was completed in 2008 and handles 8 million gallons of water per day. He said that capacity would not be possible without staff, which test water in the facility hundreds of times per day.

“The operators that operate the facility do an excellent job,” Heard said. “And it takes a lot of attention on all of the processes in that plant to keep it running properly.”