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Conyers City Hall

CONYERS — The Conyers City Council has denied a special use permit request to operate a personal care home in the Woodbridge subdivision, while acknowledging it was a difficult decision.

Applicant Pamela Spencer had asked for the special use permit that would allow her operate a registered personal care for elderly people in her home at 1041 Woodbridge Way. Spencer said she wanted to provide an alternative to a nursing home for people who can no longer live alone but who are ambulatory. “It is my passion,” said Spencer, who said she is a traveling nurse who has been in the medical field for 20 years.

Deputy Director of Planning and Inspection Services Scott Gaither told the council that regulations allow a personal care home to provide care to at least one but not more than three persons. In addition, the owner is required to live at the residence, something he said Spencer did not seem to realize when the petition was presented to the Conyers Rockdale Planning Commission on Nov. 10. The Planning Commission recommended denial of the special use permit.

Spencer told the council Nov. 17 she would provide 24-hour care to two personal care residents, including three meals and two snacks a day, help with medications, and travel to doctors appointments.

Spencer said she lives at the three-bedroom home with her husband and 9-year-old child. She said she would have two personal care residents share one of the bedrooms.

“It will be just like they are home,” she said. “I’ll be there to help them with their daily needs.”

During a public hearing on the request, several residents of the subdivision spoke in opposition to Spencer’s plan, citing the narrow streets in the neighborhood with cars parked on both sides, the number of children who play outdoors, the potential for increased traffic and concerns over property values if a business was allowed to locate there.

Following the public hearing, Mayor Vince Evans said he had concerns about the request.

“This just may not be the right place,” he said.

The council voted unanimously to deny the special use permit request.

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I have been editor of the Rockdale Citizen since 1996 and editor of the Newton Citizen since it began publication in 2004. I am also currently executive editor of the Clayton News Daily, Henry Daily Herald and Jackson Progress-Argus.

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