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Board denies relief requests
Fines for erosion issues remain in place
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Forsyth County News

The Forsyth County Zoning Board of Appeals on Tuesday denied two requests for relief from fines for erosion control issues.

The five-member panel voted unanimously night on both measures, which the county engineering department had levied.

The first request, made on behalf of KAG Properties, was to overturn $24,000 in fines placed on property in the Pleasant Manor subdivision in north Forsyth.

Homer Parr, a soil erosion inspector with the county engineering department, explained that the fines began accruing April 1 when a stop work order was issued.

The order came after a warning on March 25 when an inspection turned up various problems, including a downed silt fence, unmaintained sediment traps and large areas of eroding bare soil and slopes.

The fines stopped April 16 after Parr reinspected the property and found that improvements had been made.

Attorney Lee Tucker spoke on behalf of KAG, which was fined for two violations at $1,000 each per day.

"We have a little bit of a difference of opinion over the timing and what was going on there ...we are asking you all to uphold our appeal and waive the fines," Tucker said, adding that they thought the fines were "excessive."

"My client takes erosion and sedimentation issues and best management practices very seriously and have been responsive, not just in this instance but historically."

The subdivision has been dormant since September 2007 for financial reasons. Tucker said no problems with the site were brought to KAG's attention until March 25.

The company responded to those complaints the next day. The site was being maintained weekly by a subcontractor.
Tucker said that wet weather affected the company's ability to make repairs on the property, but it acted as quickly as possible to resolve the issues.

Simon Wilkes, senior erosion and sedimentation inspector with the county engineering department, said the county was lenient. The company could actually have been fined for three additional violations, which would have pushed the total fines to $36,000.

KAG has not previously been fined for violations in Forsyth.

The second request considered by the appeals board was made by Scott Carriere.

He wanted to appeal $3,000 in fines issued for erosion problems involving two ponds being built at a site on Old Atlanta Road in south Forsyth.

Carriere said that a stop work order was issued on the site, while erosion control measures were being installed.
According to county documents, Carriere was given a warning about the violations on Feb. 21 and a stop work order was issued March 7.

The documents also show that the warning was extended to March 7 and although some improvements had been made, the major violations had not been fixed as of that day.

The fines stopped accruing on March 11 after an inspection of the site. Carriere paid the fines March 17 to continue work on the site, but appealed to have his money reimbursed.