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Commissioners amend stormwater regulations

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By Staff Brunswick Beacon

BOLIVIA—Brunswick County Commissioners on Monday amended two sections of the county stormwater ordinance.

The first amendment was to change the fee schedule for annual stormwater inspections and re-inspections, if necessary, engineering director Jeff Phillips said.

The annual inspection fee is currently $400 per best management practice, or the best stormwater mechanism for the site, and Phillips suggested board members amend the fee to $75 for the annual inspection of the first best management practice, and $25 for any additional best management practices on the site.

Phillips said the re-inspection fee would be $100 per best management practice.

He said the engineering department researched fees charged by other counties and municipalities when recommending an amended fee schedule.

“It’s not often we reduce fees, so this should be really good news,” Phillips said.

All other fees would remain the same as the current stormwater ordinance, and single-family residential sites less than one acre remain exempt from the fee, he said.

The second stormwater ordinance amendment was “really just a change in terms,” Phillips said.

The second amendment changes the current ordinance’s wording of “disturbed area” to “built-upon area.”

Phillips said the new terminology of built-upon area refers to impervious surfaces rather than disturbed area.

Impervious surface in the ordinance is defined as “any surface, which in whole or in part, restricts or prevents the natural absorption of water into the ground.”

The amendment to change the county’s ordinance to built-upon from disturbed would also coincide with the state stormwater ordinance, Phillips said.

“Developers that disturb large areas but only install a minimum amount of impervious surface such a golf courses and parks end up paying large stormwater permit fees even though post-development runoff is significantly less than development projects adding large amounts of built-upon area,” Phillips stated in his purpose for request.

After no one spoke during a public hearing, board members approved both amendments.