To Sierra Club members and the Charlotte Environmental Community:
Are you satisfied that over 80% of the streams in Charlotte are unfit for human contact?
We certainly hope not. And we need you to take a few minutes to do something about it. On Monday night, 10/27/14, the Charlotte City Council will vote on a measure that stands to weaken the ordinance that protects our streams. It’s called the “Post-Construction Controls Ordinance” (PCCO), but it really should be called the “Charlotte Stream Protection Law.” It requires that builders use on-site controls to reduce the storm water runoff that pollutes our streams. The development community wants weaken this law by extending to developers a “get out of jail free card” called the fee-in-lieu.
If you really want to learn more about the details, you can read this article in Creative Loafing:
But here’s what you need to do immediately:
Send a letter, email or call the Mayor and as many City Council members as you can and tell them to oppose the extension of the temporary policy that allows developers to pay a fee to avoid on-site pollution controls. This fee is called a “fee-in-lieu,” meaning the developer makes a payment “in-lieu” of doing what is needed to control on-site pollution. While the payment will theoretically be used by the City storm water department to help clean-up our streams, that’s a backwards way of approaching the problem and will harm our streams. On-site pollution controls are needed.
Here are some talking points that you can use:
- Please oppose the extension of the “fee-in-lieu” to the Post-Construction Controls Ordinance.
- Over 80% of our streams are impaired and not fit for human contact.
- This is Charlotte’s most important ordinance for water quality.
- PCCO provides on-site regulations that are needed and cannot be replaced by less effective mitigation. On-site controls offer the best method of controlling pollution.
- PCCO was a compromise. A group of stakeholders met over several years to develop the ordinance. We can’t compromise on the compromise.
- It’s unrealistic to believe that development is being stopped by the PCCO.
- We should actually strengthen PCCO by requiring on-site filters.
- This is an example of paid staff from the development community trying to wear down citizens who have limited time to stay informed and involved in complicated issues. Citizens lose faith in the government and the process when this occurs.
- We should rename PCCO to “Charlotte Stream Protection Law” so that citizens can recognize its importance.
- This is an opportunity for the City Council to show environmental leadership and accountability.
Here’s the contact information for the Mayor and City Council:
Daniel (Dan) Clodfelter
Mayor Pro Tem
Email: email@example.com Phone: 704-509-6141
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 704-336-4099
Claire Green Fallon
Email: email@example.com Phone: 704-336-6105
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 704-336-3431
Patsy Kinsey, District 1
Email: email@example.com Phone: 704-336-3432 or 704-376-5367
Al Austin, District 2
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 704-336-3185
LaWana Mayfield, District 3
Email: email@example.com Phone: 704-336-3435 (office) or 704-352-7305 (cell)
Greg Phipps, District 4
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 704-336-3436
John Autry, District 5
Email: email@example.com Phone: 704-336-2777
Kenny Smith, District 6
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 704-336-3433
Ed Driggs, District 7
Email:email@example.com Phone: 704-432-7077
This is critically important. If we lose this battle, we’ll lose the opportunity to clean-up our polluted streams. And one more thing. We need to know that you’ve taken action. Please copy David Robinson, Charlotte Sierra Club Group Chair, on your emails or let him know that you’ve made calls or sent letters. David’s email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org .