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More are seeking to annex
County continues to balk at requests
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Despite protests from Dawson County officials concerning recent annexation requests, Dawsonville continues to receive applications from people who want to live in the city limits.

"I think that the future of this part of the county is right here in the city," said Kenneth Vermillion, one of three Gold Creek subdivision residents seeking annexation into Dawsonville. "We want to be part of that future and this city."

Jon Steiner lives on Nugget Lane in the neighborhood, which is off Hwy. 136/Gold Creek Parkway.

"It just makes sense to move into the city," he said. "We have two other subdivisions on either side of us that are already in the city. We have city property adjacent to us, so it just makes sense."

Dawsonville's planning board on Monday voted unanimously to recommend that the city council approve the requested zoning amendments required to fulfill the annexations.

"This rezoning is only upon annexation," said B.J. Farley, board chairman. "That part needs to be approved by the city first."

The county commission is considering objections to the requests.

"The thing that I noticed ... is at least one of them is a complete island. It doesn't touch the city in any way, shape or form. The other two may," said Commission Chairman Mike Berg.

"It's strange that the general idea of annexation is to fill in holes. [This] is the opposite. It's creating them."

The county commission also has contested the recent request by Byron Hutson to bring 37 acres on Duck Thurmond Road into the city.

Hutson has asked that the land, which is under the county zoning of residential exurban/agricultural, be annexed into the city and rezoned as restricted agricultural.

In a letter to the city, County Attorney Joey Homans wrote that approving the request without an adjacent 2-acre parcel would create an unincorporated island, a violation of Georgia code.

In addition, he said the application fails to contain a complete description of the land to be annexed.

The county also contends the proposed city zoning classification differs greatly from that of the county's and would allow an increase in density.

Commissioners also cited improvements the county made to Duck Thurmond in recent months for objecting to the annexation application.

The county has asked the city to assume sole responsibility for the road beginning where it meets Hwy. 53 "to avoid hazardous safety conditions that will develop with reasonable certainty if the county and city have separate maintenance responsibility for the same right of way/road."

In a letter dated Sept. 8, City Attorney Kevin Tallant responded to the objections and countered the county's claims on all but one of the issues. Failing to include the adjacent 2-acre parcel was an oversight and has since been corrected.

The remaining protests, according to Tallant, were not valid objections that the county should withdraw "immediately."

"You contend that the city of Dawsonville should reimburse Dawson County for the money ... spent on Duck Thurmond Road," the letter states. "I am aware of absolutely no provision in all of Georgia law or jurisprudence which would require the city to reimburse the county for work on a county road, even if portions of the road are annexed.

"By your lack of citation to any authority for this position, I can only assume you too are without support for it."

If not resolved, the matter could go into mediation for the courts to decide.

Staff writer David Renner contributed to this story.