Snellville's Oberholtzer presides over final meeting as mayor

SNELLVILLE -- Mayor Jerry Oberholtzer called the city's council meeting to order for the last time Monday evening, closing the curtains on his 12-year stint as Snellville's top elected official. The often-embattled mayor said his goodbyes with thanks and appreciation for the many city staff and council members who have worked by his side for the good of the city.

"I thought about coming in here tonight and doing a bunch of wild stuff, but I decided not to," Oberholtzer said jokingly of his last meeting as mayor.

He recognized Snellville's Recycling center for recently winning yet another state award, and took the opportunity to thank Economic Development Manager Eric van Otteren for coming on board and initiating progressive programs in the city.

City manager Dr. Russell Treadway and former city manager Jeff Timler (a native and long-time employee of Snellville) also received a nod of thanks from Oberholtzer.

Councilman Tod Warner also sat on the dais in council chambers for the last time on Monday, having chosen not to run for re-election in order to spend more time with his wife and young children.

"I hope I have done more good than bad for the city," Warner said, adding that he will return to city service in a planning capacity in the near future.

Councilmen Tom Witts and Mike Sabbagh have two years left on their terms in Snellville. Former mayor pro tem Barbara Bender and former councilwoman Kelly Kautz both resigned their seats to run for the office of mayor. That race will be decided Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Private Christian school OK'd in old Gold's Gym space

A conditional use permit was granted Monday to Integrity Christian Academy, a private school with about 100 students and staff, to occupy the 36,000 square-foot space that was formerly Gold's Gym on Main street.

The space will have to undergo extensive renovation in order the serve as a school facility, and conditions were set that specified the allowable time of a year or less before opening the school.

A rezoning and sign variance were granted Monday to Westminster Presbyterian Church, an action that was mostly a housekeeping move that consolidated three former zonings into one appropriate one -- CI (Civic and Institutional). The church will also expand the existing sign as a monument sign and a second one.