Mar 26, 2008

North Carolina Town Proposes Residential Storm Water Ponds

Builders, developers protest homeowner responsibility plan

North Carolina developers and builders have protested a homeowner storm water responsibility proposal before the Fayetteville City Council. Under the proposal, residents would be required to maintain ponds to capture and filter storm water runoff.Many homeowner associations will be ill-equipped to repair ponds 15 to 20 years down the road, according to Billy Hylton, president of the Home Builders Association of Fayetteville. The city would be better prepared to address long-term maintenance issues, he added."That is a storm water issue, and the city of Fayetteville has a storm water department," Hylton said. "These homeowners will be paying storm water fees." The city's storm water fee for households tripled to $36 annually in 2007.Local developer Dohn Broadwell, Jr., has studied the storm water pond issue as a member of the joint city/county storm water advisory board. Broadwell has supported the idea of city upkeep of ponds, estimating that the addition of ponds on residential properties would boost their value by more than $1,000.Greg Caison, director of Fayetteville's storm water utility, said the potential liability and cost of pond upkeep by the city is a concern. "We also feel like it's the city's position that new development should be self-sufficient," he said. "The older neighborhoods don't have these ponds to maintain."