A contested piece of land has passed the first step to becoming annexed into the city of Dawsonville from the county.
The property on Gold Bullion Drive West was purchased in 2012 by Michael and Nancy Eason, who, at the time, thought they were moving into the city of Dawsonville.
The property, located in the Gold Creek subdivision, however, is part of the county. It's something the Easons are trying to change by taking their request for annexation before Dawsonville's planning board Jan. 27.
"These lots essentially constitute an island because they are surrounded by property owned by the city," said Dawsonville Planning Commission Board Member Ken Breeden. "I'm glad that they want to annex and I hope their neighbors want to, as well."
Last month, the Easons filed a petition to have their lot on Gold Bullion Drive West annexed into the city, a request the Dawson County commission opposed in a 3-0 vote last Thursday. District 3 Commissioner Jimmy Hamby was unable to attend the meeting.
District 1 Commissioner Gary Pichon made the motion during the county meeting to deny the request, stating the annexation did not meet the county's zoning criteria and violates a 2007 sales tax agreement between the two governments that dictates the area in which properties can be annexed.
District 2 Commissioner James Swafford clarified their objection during the county meeting.
"No. 1, it doesn't fit the land-use plan and, No. 2, it goes against our agreements with the city as far as services," he said.
"We're an island where we are," said Nancy Eason. "We're hoping that some of our neighbors will want to annex, too. We hope this gets approved."
The motion to recommend approval of the annexation was made by Breeden and seconded by new member Caleb Philips, who was recently appointed to fill the remainder of Jimmy Castleberry's term. The vote was unanimously accepted. Richard Spaeth and B. J. Farley were absent from the meeting.
"I think it makes a lot of sense," Breeden said. "I'm glad to see that [the Easons] want to come into the city."
While the city planning commission cannot outright approve annexation requests, it will recommend that the city proceeds with the annexation, despite the county's protests.
The matter now shifts to the Dawsonville City Council, with the first hearing set for Feb. 3 and a second March 3.