Thomasville Times Enterprise

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March 9, 2006

Motocross appeals denied

CAIRO — A nine-month wait over whether or not motocross tracks in Grady County would ride past regulations set down in the Grady County Georgia Regulations for Specific Land Uses is at an end.

J. Richard Porter III, judge of Superior Courts, South Georgia Judicial Circuit, ruled March 1 to deny variance applications filed by Fastrac Motocross Park Inc., Colleen B. Millsaps, Michigan Motor Cross LLC, MTF 867, LLC and RC Racing Properties, LLC.

“The court upheld our denial,” said Charles Norton, vice-chairman of the Grady County Board of Commissioners on Thursday.

Judge Porter, in his ruling, said that the “Appellant failed to present any evidence which suggests that there exist any extraordinary and exceptional conditions as contemplated” in 6.13 of the regulations.

This section deals with on what basis a variance would be granted and include: “extraordinary and exceptional conditions pertaining to the particular piece of property in questions and because of its size, shape or topography;” “undue hardship;” “relief, if granted, would not cause substantial detriment to the public good, or impair the purposes and intent of these Regulations, provided, however, that no variance may be granted for a use of land or building or structure that is prohibited by these Regulations or State and/or Federal Laws;” and, “the proposed use will be of such location, size, and character that it will be in harmony with the appropriate and orderly development of surrounding properties.”

Porter also ruled that the evidence provided by the board supported its denial and that it “acted within its discretionary powers, and did not act arbitrarily or capriciously in denying Appellant’s Variance Application.”

The board passed the regulations in November 2004. The motocross tracks filed variance requests and, after public hearings, the commissioners agreed on June 7, 2005, to deny the requests.

Applicants then filed appeals and, in November 2005, the superior court asked the board to supply its minutes “finding of act” regarding its reasons for denying the requests to help in determining the ruling.

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