When it rains


By my estimation, five sitting Chapel Hill Town Council members are preparing to vote "yes" on Charterwood, in direct violation of their sworn oaths. Specifically, they will be rezoning a tract of land with full knowledge that their actions will have significant and costly impacts on hundreds of citizens and property owners who live downstream of the development.

How do I know this will happen?  All I had to do was open my eyes this morning. Here is a picture of sediment from Weaver Dairy Road running from Cedar Fork Creek into Eastwood Lake.Despite the best, state-of-the-art efforts of the highway contractors working on Weaver Dairy, every significant rain event has resulted in extensive silt pollution that Lake Forest homeowners will have to pay to remove.


Five council members (including Mayor Kleinschmidt) have basically said "tough shit" to people living in Lake Forest and also around Lake Ellen.  They have basically said, "We know Charterwood will be a problem for you and we don't care." 

That is not just wrong ... it is also illegal.

It's clear that this majority on the Council doesn't have a clue about how to solve the problem they will create by the Charterwood rezoning.  Yet they're charging ahead as though the problem doesn't exist.  Lake Forest homeonwers have asked them specifically to require the developer to post a performance bond of $1 million to cover the potential cost of clean up. The Council and staff didn't even look at the possibility.

The most recent vote ended in a tie because Gene Pease was absent. Once he gets back, it appears the Foolish Five will press ahead, abrogating Council responsibilities clearly specified in the Town's Development Ordinance, and burdening downstream homeowners with the high cost of cleaning up their mess.

Perhaps it's time to add a new section to the Development Ordinance, borrowed from the Hippocratic Oath:  First do no harm.


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