A housing dispute has arisen in Chattooga County between local resident Robby White and builder Jimmie Hartline.
In June, the Lyerly City Council granted a variance to Hardline that would allow him to build four tiny homes on a .22 acre lot next to Robby White’s home. White took issue with this, claiming that the city should have “consulted residents” before granting the variance to the builder.
White had several complaints. He claimed that the city had broken state law by instituting a zoning change without holding the proper meetings the state requires. The council informed him that the city of Lyerly does not have any zoning regulations, which makes the state law moot.
“So, I can raise pigs in my backyard?” White asked the council to which they replied “yes, you can.”
White also complained that the owners of the properties would “put a bunch of mexicans” in the houses as renters. It was obvious that Mr. White was extremely upset due to the nature of his speech and complaints.
White was not the only resident upset by the variance given to Jimmie Hartline. Jan Kilgo, who lives on the opposite side of the construction site from White, said that “Lyerly has always been a community of one family homes. This shouldn’t change.” The council pointed out that each home would be connected to it’s own utilities and only house one resident or pair of residents.
The council maintained that the variance had been passed with all due processes and laws taken into account. Council member Wyatt said that he thought the residents would prefer the small houses to the burned out building that had resided on that property for years.
“Mr. Hartline bought that property and cleaned it off and is putting something new there.” He said.
It was at this point that White demanded the variance be rescinded despite the fact that construction on the four houses was already under way. The council refused to do so because they were missing a council member and therefor had no quorum. They also continued to maintain that the variance was the right decision under the laws of Lyerly. Robby White was seen leaving the meeting angrily.