Clark County commission to vote on controversial Dollar General plan


Clark County commissioners will likely vote this week on the future of a controversial Dollar General proposed at the site of a long-vacant former business site in Bethel Twp.

Commissioners held a public hearing on a request to rezone two acres at 5550 W. National Road earlier this month for the planned retail store. The commission voted unanimously to table the issue because residents said they didn’t receive proper notification of recent hearings.

RELATED: Bethel Twp. residents speak out against proposed Dollar General

The store is unnecessary, could create traffic problems and bring more crime to the neighborhood, residents said. A group of residents opposed to the plan are expected to attend the meeting at 10 a.m. Wednesday in the commission office, on the fifth floor of 50 E. Columbia St.

“We don’t want it,” said Bethel Twp. resident Charlotte Fogarty, who lives nearby on U.S. 40. “There are 10 of them around us.”

The rezoning request was made by Jason Horowitz of Nashville-based GBT Realty, who sought to develop a similar store in 2015. He couldn’t be reached for comment on Monday.

This application is the third time a request has been made to put a Dollar General store within three miles of that location on West National Road, Fogarty said. She’s made phone calls to dozens of neighbors who have yet to hear about the proposed store, she said.

PRIOR COVERAGE: Bethel Twp. residents worried about impact of proposed retail

The rezoning for the store planned at the corner of West National and North Tecumseh roads was approved by both the Clark County Planning Commission and the Clark County Rural Zoning Commission in June.

However some residents and property owners who live within 200 feet of the proposed retail store told them they weren’t notified of the meeting held on June 15.

County commissioners sought to have the case reappear at the Rural Zoning Commission in September, but were told by the Clark County Prosecutor’s Office it’s not legal to send the case back because the first hearing had already taken place.

The county sent new notices by certified mail, County Commissioner Rick Lohnes said.

“It’s all we can do,” Lohnes said. “We’re on a time frame. We have to make a decision on Wednesday.”

RELATED: Mad River Twp. residents urge Clark County to fight mining lawsuit

Lohnes has received a few calls from residents in favor of the new development, he said, and it would also improve the tax base for Tecumseh schools. The store could also be beneficial to nearby residents, Lohnes said.

“If you’re out there at Donnelsville or anywhere else in that area, where do you get something if you forgot to pick up bread or milk at the store?” Lohnes asked.

“It’s one of those tough calls,” he said. “I want to listen to what people have to say. It’s not a very attractive site as it stands right now.”

The Clark County Community and Economic Development Department provides notices of the hearing to property owners who live within 200 feet of the proposal through regular mail.

If approved, the West National Road location would be the 10th Dollar General in Clark County.

SOCIAL MEDIA: FOLLOW REPORTER MICHAEL COOPER ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER.

The property is currently zoned community business and rural residence district. The proposal would change the zoning to a neighborhood business.

The site is the former Fort Tecumseh Olde Fashun Store, which closed in 2012. There would be no access to the proposed store from U.S. 40.

County staff recommended the rezoning based on several conditions, including:

• Approval from the Ohio EPA that the proposed retail development can utilize the existing community sewer system.

• Approval from the County Engineer’s Department for compliance with storm water regulations.

• Lots being split from the Tecumseh Heights subdivision.

In 2015, the Clark County Board of Zoning Appeals denied a variance request to reduce the frontage requirements on a property and split about 2 acres of land off from a more than 21-acre parcel because the company didn’t have a solution for drainage issues on the property on West National Road.

3 NEWS-SUN MUST READS

Clark County schools make changes due to drug crisis, 1 stocks Narcan

3 Republicans in running to replace Clark County juvenile court judge

Clark County leaders glad to hear Trump call drug crisis an emergency



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Politics

Big money, political muscle on display in payday lending clash
Big money, political muscle on display in payday lending clash

Payday lending stores dot the landscape of Ohio’s small towns, suburban strip malls and inner-city thoroughfares. To hear one side tell it, they give their customers — many with bad credit — much-needed access to quick money for emergencies and everyday expenses. To hear the other side tell it, they take advantage of the poor by charging...
Brown takes shot at Renacci in negative ad
Brown takes shot at Renacci in negative ad

THE AD: A 30-second television commercial for Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio. WHERE TO SEE IT: State broadcast television and here  VIDEO: Unflattering images of Renacci. Then it concludes with Sherrod Brown chatting with industrial workers. SCRIPT: Voice of a narrator: The U.S. Congress. There’s 68 teachers, 15 farmers, four pilots, but...
Should people work for Medicaid? Here’s how to weigh in.
Should people work for Medicaid? Here’s how to weigh in.

The clock has started for the next round of public comment on Ohio’s proposal to create the state’s first ever work requirements associated with Medicaid. The new rules would add requirements to work or go to school at least 20 hours per week to remain eligible for benefits under the health insurance program for low-income Ohioans, which...
Recreational marijuana closer to Ohio ballot — but lots of work ahead
Recreational marijuana closer to Ohio ballot — but lots of work ahead

Legalized recreational marijuana is one small step closer to appearing on Ohio ballots in 2019. The Ohio Ballot Board certified a proposed constitutional amendment Thursday, according to Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted’s office. The amendment was previously certified earlier this month by Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. Ohio Families for...
Bill would create firefighter database aimed at reducing cancer rates
Bill would create firefighter database aimed at reducing cancer rates

A bill that would create a voluntary database of firefighters across the country who contract cancer is awaiting House action after the Senate approved it last week without even a floor vote. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, co-sponsored the Senate bill along with Republican Lisa Murkowski of Alaska. The House version’s co-sponsors include Rep. Mike...
More Stories