Tucker City Council holds public hearings on personal care homes
By Logan C. Ritchie, contributor
Tucker City Council wrapped up 2019 with two public hearings on the conversion of residential homes to personal care homes. With 13 licensed community living arrangements and six state licensed personal care homes, many facilities are tucked into residential streets.
A personal care home is licensed by the state and provides 24-hour care for adults with mental health challenges, developmental disabilities, and addictive diseases. Community living arrangements are a type of personal care home funded in part by the Georgia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities.
Applicants Joan McCook and Anne Marie Thyme applied for a Special Land Use Permit (SLUP) to convert 5002 Chamblee Tucker Road residence into a personal care home. However, the property is within 1,000 feet of another PCH. McCook and Thyme also applied for a variance to amend the city’s proximity rule.
The second read for 5002 Chamblee Tucker Road last night was deferred to Jan. 14, 2020, to give council more time to discuss. Mayor Frank Auman pushed off the vote in part because council member Pat Soltys was absent.
In September, Tucker Planning Commission recommended City Council deny the SLUP and variance in a unanimous vote.
No citizens spoke in favor or against the property at 5002 Chamblee Tucker Road.
Lisa Marleen Reisman’s application for a SLUP to convert 2722 Regal Way, a four-bedroom residence, to a personal care home was more controversial.
According to her application, Resiman intends “to provide a living arrangement for four unrelated people with an intellectual and developmental delay such as Down Syndrome or Autism to live together in the home under a rental agreement.”
Under current Tucker code, Reisman could operate a personal care home for up to three special needs adults without a SLUP.
Tucker resident Sandra Rice is a case worker for the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities. As the mother of a 34-year-old son with Down Syndrome, she said, “I am in favor of this home because [Georgia] closed institutions down because we don’t want individuals confined to institutions. We want individuals with disabilities to be in the community so neighbors can know them. They are individuals just like we are; they need a little extra support to be successful.”
Rice is a member of Better Living Together, a resource for parents of adult children with developmental disabilities.
Neighbors opposed to the application cited property values, noise levels, and commercialization of the neighborhood as major concerns.
A second read for 2722 Regal Way is scheduled for the next City Council meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020.
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