Durham County commissioners are holding a special closed meeting at 10 a.m. Thursday about the Jordan Lake protest petition, County Commissioner Becky Heron said this afternoon.
The Haw River Assembly isn't giving up its fight against changing a watershed boundary line for Jordan Lake.
The Assembly and the Southern Environmental Law Center claim that the Durham City-County Planning Department erred in ruling its protest petition invalid. They want the county to acknowledge the change did not win county commissioners' approval by a 3-2 vote Oct. 12.
The Durham Planning Commission was scheduled to consider moving a critical watershed boundary near Jordan Lake tonight, but they put it off until August.
Commissioners continued the case so as to discuss a land-use designation change for the property affected at the same time as they discuss the zoning change that was on tonight's agenda.
The boundary move in question would take a 164-acre tract proposed for a subdivision out of the protected critical area around the lake.
Conservationists are opposing the move as a threat to water quality in Jordan Lake, drinking-water source for Chatham County and several Wake County towns. The lake is under state and federal mandates for cleanup and improved protection due to already-high pollution levels.
The state Division of Water Quality is standing by its February ruling that allows Durham County to proceed with resetting part of the Jordan Lake watershed boundary on the basis of a developer-commissioned survey.
The state Environmental Management Commission had asked DWQ's response to questions raised by Durham resident Melissa Rooney, Durham Planning Commission Chairman George Brine and Haw River Assembly Director Elaine Chioso.
When all was said and done — for the time being — Bull's Eye overheard Durham County commissioner Ellen Reckhow comment, "It's the greatest show in town."
Commissioner Brenda Howerton had a different conclusion.
"It's a mess," she said.
Both were right. And show and mess will probably go on for some time to come.
They were talking about the Jordan Lake watershed boundary, which came before the commissioners and a standing-room crowd Monday night.
Howerton cast the deciding vote to subject the Jordan Lake watershed boundary to a rezoning process that includes at least two public hearings.
At the outset of tonight's Durham County Board of Commissioners meeting, which includes the public hearing on the disputed Jordan Lake watershed boundary, Commissioner Joe Bowser denied a newspaper's report that he is "in the camp of the developer."
Then he said, "I see the developer being on the right side in this."