No community members spoke at a hearing Thursday, Oct. 22 about proposed changes to Hall County’s stormwater regulations.
The changes would adjust Hall’s rules to match standards from the Georgia Environmental Protection Division being adopted by the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District.
The Hall County Board of Commissioners will hold another hearing and a vote on Thursday, Nov. 12.
The rules would require developers to retain the first inch of rainfill on a site as much as possible.
“Proper management of post-construction stormwater runoff will minimize damage to public and private property and infrastructure, safeguard the public health, safety, environment and general welfare of the public, and protect water and aquatic resources,” according to the proposed ordinance, available on the county website.
The ordinance would apply to developments that would add at least 5,000 square feet of impervious surface.
Commissioner Billy Powell said Thursday he had asked staff to look at other options that would still meet state regulations.
“These are stricter regulations that they’re basically forcing us to adopt by Dec. 1, and I just don’t like bureaucrats in Atlanta making arbitrary decisions that hurt development locally,” he said.
Powell said the requirement to contain the first inch of rainfall on a site could look different for each site.
“Where’s the science behind that one inch? What if it’s sandy soil versus clay soil? What if there’s steep topography?” he said.
The regulations could drive up costs for developers that would trickle down to other consumers, Powell said.
“If they’re renting a space in a new office building, that office building is going to cost more and their rent is going to cost more,” Powell said.