Statement from the Concerned Citizens for Responsible Development made at the Swain County commissioners meetings on Tuesday, July 11
The concern of our group is that Swain County appears to have no control of development to inside and outside interests.
To regain control, we feel that the county needs a moratorium on building permits and erosion control plans for all steep slope developments. This moratorium will allow the county time to appoint an advisory board to develop and adopt ordinances for responsible and safe development.
Why does Swain County need this?
• Fortyfive percent of real property taxes are mailed out of county.
• If development continues as it has, ground water and the water table will become polluted, requiring water and sewer treatment plants for the whole county. The taxpayers can not afford this.
• Because of land disturbing activity for roads and house places, storm water run off from 10 and 100 year floods will cause economic damage and hardship to all property owners, as an example, Peeks Creek in Macon County. Native peoples of the county knew better than to build on steep slopes. These million dollar views may be great selling points for the developers, but the damage caused by development can become million dollar problems for the residents who are left behind to clean up the mess from these limited liability developers.
In closing, Concerned Citizens for Responsible Development are not against development. We are requesting roads that meet width and grade established by the unique needs of Swain County and that can be accessed by emergency vehicles. Well placement and drilling must also meet county requirements. If the county would control just these two factors, it would be a huge step toward responsible development for the future of Swain County. We are respectfully requesting the Swain County Board of Commissioners to thoughtfully consider our concerns; to immediately vote for a moratorium on issuing building and erosions permits on any steep slope sites until a comprehensive county development plan is developed and adopted.