The Chapel Hill Town Council was to continue its discussion this evening about how to fund the extension of sewer service to the Historic Rogers Road Neighborhood, in its first meeting of the 2014-2015 session. However, town staff is again recommending a continuation of the public hearing.
On February 10, 2014 the Chapel Hill Town Council voted unanimously to pay their share of the preliminary engineering and surveying necessary to extend sewer to the historic Rogers Road Community (this would include 86 home lots). These activities are required for the extension of sewer regardless of whether the Chapel Hill Town Council moves forward with a utility district or ETJ. In addition to funding for this preliminary engineering work, the CHTC voted in favor of including funding for community outreach efforts to assist community members in learning about the preliminary engineering work and what it means to go forward with sewer hook-ups (see agenda item with link to staff memo here).
The Historic Rogers Road Neighborhood Task Force continues its work but has a
new barrier to contend with that may preclude the Orange County Board of
Commissioners from taking action. As reported in this story
by Chapelboro, an EPA complaint filed by the Rogers-Eubanks
Neighborhood Association in 2007 alleges the Orange County Planning and
Inspections Department (OCPID) "intentionally discriminated on the basis
of race by denying water and sewer service to the African American
residents of the Rogers Road Community." The full letter from the EPA to
the OCPID can be read here.
the recent task force meeting held on July 17, 2013, Board of Commissioners representatives Renee Price and Penny Rich abstained from several votes on recommendations of what
to include in the task force's final report, citing the EPA complaint.
At their meetings last night, both the Carrboro Board of Aldermen and Orange County Board of Commissioners considered resolutions concerning the Rogers Road Task Force. The Carrboro Board of Aldermen unanimously approved a resolution expressing their support for full sewer service for all of the Rogers Road neighborhood. By contrast, the Board of County Commissioners rejected a separate resolution put forward by Commissioner Mark Dorosin that would have expressed the BOCC's intent to participate in the provision of sewer improvements. Only Dorosin and Commissioner Barry Jacobs voted in favor of the resolution.
A full complement of Task Force members was in attendance at today's meeting of the Historic Rogers Road Task Force. The Task Force is nearing it's end and as Alderperson Michelle Johnson notes in her recent post, there is a lot on the line. Most task force members came to the meeting expecting to talk about two options: annexation of the Eubanks-Rogers Road Neighborhood or development of an Extra-territorial Jurisdiction (ETJ). Instead, Orange County Assistant Manager Michael Talbert proposed a third alternative that I'll call the Hybrid 77% Plan (but some at the meeting jokingly called the Talbert Plan).
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