Durham County is not going to revisit the October 12th Jordan Lake watershed zoning vote, unless forced to do so by a lawsuit, so money is being collected to start a lawsuit December 11th. The County government says it is going to argue that the landowner petition was invalid if sued, though the Planning Department has now reversed its earlier decision, too late for the petition to have mattered. This is in addition to the developer's lawsuit claiming the County violated their "property rights," though October 12th the County did what the developer wants, but that zoning is not all they need the County to approve in order to build 751 South (which some still call 751 Assemblage). Below is an appeal from the zoning opponents, which they say to pass along, so I assume it can be posted here.
"The Durham Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) are leaving signers of the Jordan Lake boundary protest petition no recourse but to sue in order to get justice.
Durham activists have begun a fund to pay the legal fees for individual petition signers who are willing to be plaintiffs in a suit that would uphold the protest petition and stop the lake boundary change. This decision will affect everyone who cares about Jordan Lake - for drinking water and recreation.
Please send a check (put 'Jordan Lake Protest Petition Suit' in the memo) to "Ragsdale Liggett Trust Account" and mail it to
Ragsdale Liggett, PLLC
Post Office Box 31507
Raleigh, NC 27622
Time is of the essence. The attorney needs to start work immediately to meet the December 11 filing deadline.
Donations of $100 or more will be refunded in whole or in part if the county is required to pay our court costs. In this case, donations under $100 will be given to the Haw River Assembly for the future maintenance and protection of Jordan Lake.
The Haw River Assembly and Southern Environmental Law Center organized a zoning protest petition that was signed by 24 landowners in the affected boundary change area near Jordan Lake. The petition exceeded the minimum required, but was deemed invalid by the Durham Planning Department. The BOCC then voted on October 12 to approve the lake boundary change (that clears the way for a massive new development project to be built in what had been a protected watershed zone). SELC and HRA found that the Planning Department had made errors in counting properties in the petition and the Planning Deptartment now agrees that the petition is valid. A valid protest petition means that the BOCC vote to approve the boundary change needs a "super-majority" 4-1 vote to pass, which it did not have. Instead of admitting this mistake and acknowledging that the boundary should not be changed, the BOCC accepted the county lawyer's advice to defend that vote and decision - telling the petition signers to take them to court if they don't like it."