Collegedale Commissioners Referee Stormwater Dispute

Tuesday, July 16, 2013 - by Gail Perry

 Collegedale Commissioners held a hearing Monday night in an attempt to resolve a dispute between the city and two longtime residents. Mr. and Mrs. Fred Hayes bought their home and six acres in 1978 at 5641 Barrington Country Circle. In 1985 they acquired four acres that back up to the original lot.

In 2010 discussions were broached about the potential for building a world class dressage training facility on the four-acre property and Aug. 9, 2010, Mr. Hayes sent Andrew Morkert, Collegedale’s building inspector, a letter to notify the city that the project would be going forward. In late 2011 land disturbance started. The first structure built was an 80-foot by 200-foot dressage area modeled on a design from Kentucky. There are no issues with this part of the project since the surface is designed with excellent water absorption, officials said. This is already in use.

Plans for a barn were submitted to the building inspector on Jan. 3, 2013, and at that time, a building permit was issued along with a letter from the building inspector giving requirements for the permit. Mr. Morkert modified and added to requirements during the beginning phase of the building construction. However, with all the other changes he requested, he never mentioned the issue of a detention pond for storm water run-off until construction of the barn was nearly complete, it was claimed.

If given notice before the building was begun, the couple said a detention pond could have been planned into the design. However, since the structure is complete, a detention pond would now have to be buried with a substantial cost estimated to be around $50,000.

The barn, which was completed in mid-May, has yet to be used because the building inspector will not issue the owners a certificate of occupation and will not allow electricity to be connected to the structure.

Chris Clem, attorney representing the Hayes couple, contended that when the permit was issued with no mention of a detention pond, that requirement of the storm water ordinance had been waived. Another option that would have eliminated the requirement all together would have been to combine the two adjacent pieces of property into one consisting of 11 acres, which would exempt the necessity for a pond since the larger size lot would fulfill the stormwater specifications. Furthermore, he said, this has never before been applied to construction of a barn, which he referred to a “selective enforcement.”

Commissioner Debbie Baker said that reports show excellent cooperation in all other phases of the building and questioned what brought the water issues to the attention of  the commission, asking if it was because neighbors had complained of water running across their property during heavy rains.

In cross examining Mr. Morkert, attorney Clem asked why he had waited five months before notifying the owners that a detention pond was needed since he had requested other changes. This question yielded the reply of I don’t know.

In the end, a motion was made and passed unanimously, which defers a decision of the appeal until the second meeting in September. Commissioners gave permission to occupy the barn with the stipulation that occupation can be withdrawn if the specified conditions are not met. The intention is to abandon the joint property line to create one large piece of land that will be zoned residential.  This will require the approval of the city’s planning commission. It is expected that engineers from both the development and the city will find a mutual solution to the water issues on the property.

In regular business, the commissioners voted to participate in the TML Risk Management Pool grant program. This $1,500 grant will be a 50 percent match with the city and will be used to buy safety equipment such as steel toe boots and safety vests.

City Manager Ted Rogers, in his financial report, said the city is financially healthy. The city has met all projections of revenue and came in below budgeted expenditures. Mayor John Turner said this exemplifies good stewardship of the city’s money, and that the commissioners are conservative by nature.


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ASHWORTH, JESSE ANDREW  1267 LEASIDE LANE HIXSON, 37343  Age at Arrest: 30 years old Arresting Agency: Federal Marshall Booked for Previous Charges or Other Reason(s) --- BALLEW, JEFFERY LAMAR  1506 MULBERRY STREET CHATTANOOGA, 37404  Age at Arrest: 48 years old Arresting Agency: ... (click for more)

Darrel Eric Chapman, 49, Dies In Red Bank Home Destroyed By Fire; Case Ruled Arson/Suicide

Darrel Eric Chapman, 49,  died in a house fire in Red Bank early Friday morning after the homeowner said he was awakened by popping sounds. Red Bank Police Chief Tim Christol said the case is being considered an arson/suicide. He said, " At approximately 12:30 a.m., the Red Bank Fire and Police departments responded to a residential fire at 604 Bitsy Lane where they discovered ... (click for more)

Save Coolidge Park - And Response (2)

Last Monday morning while at work a good friend messaged me concerning a matter that I had not heard anything about dealing with Coolidge Park and its future. Apparently that night the City Council was to read an ordinance that would allow the mayor to start negotiations with the relocation of the Medal of Honor Museum. This ordinance would enable the city to lease approximately ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Tipping The Preacher

I got an unusual telephone call the other day from someone I love who asked my help in solving one of life’s delicate mysteries. It is a tough question: “How do you tip a preacher?” In the first place, you never tip a preacher. It’s the preacher who gives out the tips, helping to keep you on the straight-and-narrow in your quest to waltz through the Pearly Gates. But there are ... (click for more)

UTC Craine Named Top-10 FCS Ball Carriers By Athlon Sports

  University of Tennessee at Chattanooga running back Derrick Craine is among the top-10 ball carriers in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) according to an article from Athlon Sports earlier this week.  Craine, a senior from McDonough, Ga., is No. 9 on Athlon's preseason list of running backs.  He is coming off a school-record 1,251 yards in 2015. ... (click for more)

Prep Football Jamboree is Aug 12-13 at Finley Stadium

Highlighted by a match-up of state semifinalists in Baylor and Notre Dame, the 57th annual Prep Football Jamboree is set for Aug. 12-13 at Finley Stadium with five games each night. Baylor (10-3) reached the D-II AA semis before losing to eventual state champ Brentwood Academy, while Notre Dame (10-4) reached the D-I 3A semis before losing to eventual state champion Alcoa. ... (click for more)