Published: Nov 16, 2012 08:57 PM
Modified: Nov 16, 2012 08:58 PM
CHAPEL HILL - The Town Council weighed an amendment Monday to the town’s 2003 stormwater management rules to cut the cost of a new home.
The council also discussed amending the Resource Conservation District rules to reduce the local stream buffer. The Jordan Lake rules require a 50-foot buffer, while the town now requires 150 feet.
The Stormwater Advisory Committee is recommending a 100-foot buffer that will reduce nutrients but protect plant and wildlife habitat and water quality.
The discussion could continue Dec. 3.
The stormwater rules require homeowners to managed 85 percent of their runoff when a single- or two-family lot disturbs at least 5,000 square feet of land.
The rules add $25,000 to $30,000 to the cost of a home for engineering and construction of a stormwater system, officials said.
Maintenance is an extra expense.
They also create safety and appearance issues, several speakers said.
A rule change would trigger the requirements when 20,000 square feet of land or more is disturbed – stricter than the Jordan Lake rules’ one-acre threshold, officials said.
The council also will set the fee for a new home stormwater permit. Until the council’s decision, roughly 30 homes under construction will bypass stormwater management controls, officials said.