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Norcross mayor, councilmen take oaths for 2nd terms

NORCROSS -- Mayor Bucky Johnson and councilmen Craig Newton and Charlie Riehm all took their oaths of office again for second terms Monday night. Judge Ken Wickham, a Norcross municipal judge since 2003, performed the ceremonial swearings-in.

Councilman Ross Kaul was appointed this year's mayor pro tem for the city.

Historic demolition permit granted

Jim and Sondra Sparr, owners of the historic home and property located at 496 N. Peachtree St., were given the go-ahead by city council members Monday to demolish the house and build a new one. The existing home, which was damaged by fire in 2008 and later by vandalism and water, would cost more to restore than to demolish and replace, architect Robert Forro said.

The Sparrs plan to retire soon and build a larger, one-story home on the property.

"We looked everywhere from Peachtree City to Suwanee, and we decided Norcross is the place we want to retire," Jim Sparr said.

Adjacent neighbor Justin Hester expressed his relief upon learning of the Sparrs' plans.

"The last year and a half has been troubling, since the fire," Hester said. "We couldn't be happier."

The city's architectural review board has been assisting the Sparrs with the design plans for the new residence.

Special-use permits granted for churches

City leaders gave two churches the OK Monday to hold services in existing business parks within the city. God's Impact Pentecoste Ministries Acts 1:8 Church will now take up residence at 6825 Jimmy Carter Blvd. The 50-member congregation will occupy a 4,100 square feet of space in Building 3100 of the office park.

Perimeter Church was also granted a special-use permit for 5172 Brook Hollow Parkway in Norcross. The church will occupy a 4,950 square feet of space in Suite H and is headquartered in Johns Creek. Perimeter Church often "plants" smaller churches in outlying locations and currently has 30 such operations in place.