Planning & Zoning Commission

The Planning & Zoning Commission is a five member local body appointed by the Mayor and City Council. Commissioners must be residents of the City of Harlem and are appointed for four year terms. The Commission holds public meetings on requests for rezoning, conditional uses, variances, and subdivision of property. The Commission also recommends and reviews amendments to the Planning and Zoning code of the City, as well as helps to formulate and review the Comprehensive Plan and other City land use studies. The recommendations of the Commission and any other information are forwarded to the City Council for final action.

The deadline for submittal is the date that all information needed for an application must be submitted to the City of Harlem Planning & Zoning Department. This deadline insures enough time to notify the public of the pending application via the Columbia County News-Times and at the proposed location. This also gives City of Harlem staff sufficient time to review the request and prepare a recommendation for the Commission to consider. To view submittal deadlines for all meetings please click here.

Applications for rezoning, conditional use, and variances are provided below.

For more information on the Planning and Zoning code of the Code of Harlem, please see Title XV, Chapter 152.

To view the Comprehensive Plan, please click here.

Request for Zoning Action

There are three types of zoning actions: rezoning, conditional use, and variance. A more detailed explanation of each is as follows:

A rezoning is required when a property owner wishes to change the land use district of their property to permit a new use. An example would be changing a piece of property from residential to commercial. Before requesting this change, applicants are required to hold a pre-application meeting with Planning & Zoning staff to go over the application and for staff to provide further information on the application. After the pre-app meeting, the applicant can request the rezoning. Please note that applications must be submitted and complete before the deadline as noted above. Department staff will review the request utilizing the Planning and Zoning code and Comprehensive Plan. Other departments, such as Public Works and Public Safety, will be consulted with as well. Staff will prepare a recommendation for the Commission which will be presented to the Commission and applicant at a public meeting. Public comment is welcome and encouraged. The Commission will deliberate on the request and provide its recommendation to City Council. The City Council will then hear the request at its next meeting and provide final action. Only after this final step can work commence. For the rezoning application please click here: Rezoning Application Form.

A conditional use permits a certain use of property that the Planning & Zoning Commission and City Council have determined is a more intensive use than is normally permitted in that district. Because of the higher intensity of the use and the potential negative impact on surrounding property, conditional uses listed in the Code of Ordinances are required to go before the Planning & Zoning Commission for a recommendation and City Council for final action. Applications for a conditional use follow the same procedure as a rezoning. For a conditional use application please click here: Conditional Use Application Form. A listing of conditional uses, broken down into residential and commercial zoning classifications, is available in Title XV, Chapter 152, Conditional Uses.

A variance permits a property owner, because of unusual, exceptional, or extraordinary circumstances or conditions applying to their property to request a change to required development codes that only applies to their lot. An example would be requesting a change to minimum front yard setbacks to allow for a house of the minimum size to be built on a parcel that otherwise would not be able to because of extraordinary circumstances or conditions. All variance requests are required to go before the Planning & Zoning Commission for a recommendation and City Council for final action. A variance request follows the same procedures as a rezoning. For a variance request application please click here: Variance Application Form

The fee schedule for zoning actions is available here.

For more information please contact the department at 706-556-0043.

Members of the Commission

Chairman John Neal

Vice Chairman Tim Farr

Commissioner Lance Ellis

Commissioner Robert Holland

Commissioner James Thomas, Jr.

The Commission meets on the first Tuesday of every month at 6:00PM at the Harlem Public Safety Building located at 110 West Milledgeville Road. The meeting dates for 2017 are:

January 3rd
February 7th
March 7th
April 4th
May 2nd
June 6th
July 4th
August 1st
September 5th
October 3rd
November 7th
December 5th

To view archived agendas please click here