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Weddington sewer discussion continues

WEDDINGTONThe town council deliberated for over three hours in open session Monday night regarding a controversial private sewer treatment plant for the proposed neighborhood The Woods.

They failed to come to a decision and adjourned the meeting.

The council re-called and questioned several witnesses before going into deliberations.

The council, as a whole, did not give any solid indication of which way it might go. Council members seemed to agree that the plant did not endanger public health and safety and that all building requirements and specifications had been met.

The council could not come to a consensus as to whether neighboring property values would be harmed. They also could not agree whether the plant fit Weddington's land use guidelines.

“It's all a little unknown and it makes me uneasy,” Councilwoman L.A. Smith said. She pointed out that, if approved it could be the first of many private wastewater treatment plants in the area. Union County currently has little or no sewer access available for new residential development.

“That's not going to be in keeping with the character of our land use plan,” Smith said.

“We can't go against the land use plan. We just can't,” Mayor Nancy Anderson said.

Council members seemed worried that the developer had not consulted with Union County Public Works about how to bring sewer lines to that development and the properties around it.

“I've not heard any indication that they have even had a conversation with the county,” Anderson said.

No one from Union County Public Works was called to testify about the future of sewer in the Mundy's Run basin, where The Woods property and several other neighborhoods sit.

The start of the hearing was delayed nearly an hour from its advertized 6 p.m. start because Councilman Robert Gilmartin was absent and proceedings could not begin without him.

“Apparently our meeting conflicts with the 8-year-old football practice schedule,” Anderson told the crowd of about 60 people that attended the meeting.

The legal representatives for IB Development, the developer of The Woods, will draft a motion in favor of approval. The representatives for the Friends of Weddington, a group of residents against the plant, will draft a motion against the plant. Both groups will submit their motions to the council at the next meeting for the council to vote on.

The council recessed the meeting to 7 p.m. Thursday at Weddington Town Hall. The location will likely be moved if the crowd is large.