TitleMax, a privately owned title lending company based in Savannah, Ga., submitted its application before the moratorium was issued, Paul Loving, the city’s building official, said at Monday’s Board of Aldermen meeting.

TitleMax may open a location in Sugar Creek after all.

In September, the city issued a moratorium on businesses offering financial services such as banks, savings and loan companies, pawn shops, car title companies and payday loan companies for the commercial real estate at U.S. 24 and Sterling Ave.

TitleMax, a privately owned title lending company based in Savannah, Ga., submitted its application before the moratorium was issued, Paul Loving, the city’s building official, said at Monday’s Board of Aldermen meeting.

“We need to respond positively or negatively to the building application,” Loving said. “Everything is in order with their application.”

City Attorney Bob Buckley said the board should offer TitleMax a hearing during the study session at its Nov. 3 meeting.

“I’ve met with their attorney, and this is an unusual situation,” Buckley said. “They came to the city before a moratorium was even on the radar screen.”

According to Buckley, TitleMax sent the city a letter months ago requesting whether they could, under the city’s zoning ordinance, build along the U.S. 24 corridor. He said they were assured they could and, as a result, purchased property at 10704 U.S. 24., where they planned to convert what was formerly a Sonic Drive-In restaurant.

“The overriding factor to me is they bought this property based on a letter from (Planning Engineer Liz Arasmith),” Buckley said. “Not that Liz did anything wrong; she didn’t know we were going to put a moratorium on these types of uses.”

The board unanimously agreed to allow TitleMax officials to present their case at 6 p.m. Nov. 3 at the beginning of the board’s study session.

In other business, Mayor Stan Salva said he had spoken with Sugar Creek resident Jane Mallinson – who wrote the original resolution in 1983 allowing for the dedication of the Wayne City Landing, which was rededicated Friday – about the city helping in the financing of a metal sculpture on the site depicting an oxen pulling a cart. Salva said it would cost about $1,500 and the city would pay part of the total.

“I think if you go out there and take a look at it you can easily visualize an oxen pulling a cart up that hill at River Boulevard,” Salva said. “I think it’s a terrific idea.”

He said he will go before the board again with more details at a later date.