Email Blast - August 4th 2020


To the Residents of Briar Chapel,

The public hearing for the rezoning request by Bold Development for Williams Corner is scheduled for Monday, August 17th at 6pm-9pm (though this will likely go later). This rezoning request includes plans for 540-apartment units and commercial development to use Briar Chapel’s WWTP for offsite wastewater treatment and discharge based upon ONSWC written statement that they can provide this service.

If you wish to oppose these plans and want to help, the time to act is now. You have several options to participate:

1) Participate in public hearing either:

a. in person (socially distanced)

b. via remote webinar

c. via voice-mail

2) Submit your own comments or letter to the board via:

a. Email

b. Regular mail

3) Use the template letter we have provided to send to the commissioners and Clerk

We hope you’ll find the information below helpful.

Participate in Public Hearing

If you wish to directly participate in the public hearing, you’ll need to sign up on the Chatham County Public Input & Hearings Signup. We expect that these spots will fill up quickly. They are only going to allow 30 minutes for each of the public hearings because of the volume of public hearings for that night. They will also prioritize speakers by: 1) in person, 2) remote webinar and 3) via voicemail.

When you go to the signup page, you will:

· Select CC BOC meeting on August 17th 2020

· Provide full name, address, phone number, email address

· Select Public Hearing #3 to speak on the rezoning request by Bold Development for Williams Corner

· Select method you want to use to make your public statement:

o In-Person – They will allow in-person speakers using laptops for the remote rooms with appropriate social distancing.

o Remote via Webinar – You access their remote meeting software via webinar using your laptop camera and microphone. They will send you a link to the Webinar session by the Thursday before the meeting. You should download the webinar software before the meeting

o Voicemail – You can leave a voicemail with your public comments on 919-545-8306.

For all of these methods, you need to keep your comments to 3 minutes and they can be submitted in writing ahead of time to to be included in the public record.

Submit Written Comments/Letter to Chatham County Board of Commissioners

If you do not wish to speak, you can also submit written comments or a letter before the August 17th meeting. We have provided a template letter that you can use -or- you can write your own statement or letter. Written comments/letters can be sent via:

· Email to:

o Karen Howard: (Chair)

o Diane Hales: (Vice-chair)

o Mike Dasher:

o Jim Crawford:

o Andy Wilkie:

o Lindsay Ray: (Clerk)

o Kaitlyn Warren:

· Regular mail by mailing to each of the above using this address:

Clerk of Board of Commissioners

P.O. Box 1809

Pittsboro, NC 27312

Major Sewage Spill

A few new pieces of information from the large sewage spill that occurred on July 26th. We are waiting on NC DEQ to post ONSWC’s official 5-day sanitary sewage overflow report of the incident, but rough estimates are that about 25,000 gallons of raw sewage was spilled during that event.

Mr. McDonald (Owner of Integra Water/ONSWC) sent out an email on July 27th apologizing for the event, taking responsibility and explaining what he plans to do to prevent future occurrences. First, you should know that Integra Water (Mr. McDonald) has owned a 95% share of ONSWC since May 2018. The majority of the 26 sewage spills that we have experienced have occurred under his watch.

In his email, Mr. McDonald refers to the incident as a “leak”. An estimated 25,000 gallons of raw sewage running across Briar Chapel property into Pokeberry Creek is a major sewage spill, not a “leak”.

Mr. McDonald is correct that the force main and collection system were built by Newland with PVC piping, rather than the stronger HDPE or iron piping. Since the WWTP was placed one of the highest points of our community, most of the wastewater must be pushed by pumps up to the WWTP. The pumps come on intermittently and when they startup they create a lot of pressure on the pipes as the wastewater is pushed up to the WWTP. This pressure has caused the pipe breaks along the force main. In June, Integra Water/ONSWC replaced a 1000’ section of the force main. When they cut it over, we immediately had three sewage spills. Replacing this section, has only moved the problem to another section of the force main.

In Mr. McDonald’s email he states “It is becoming clearer and clearer that the Briar Chapel water reclamation system is in dire need of upgrades to handle the increased size of the community.” We agree that Briar Chapel’s wastewater system needs major upgrades and we hope that Mr. McDonald follows through on his commitment to make these upgrades. We simply question his timing and motivations. These problems have been apparent for several years under his ownership but only now, two months before a decision by NCUC on whether to allow ONSWC to expand the Briar Chapel WWTP to meet the needs of Fearrington Village and other surrounding communities, does Integra Water/ONSWC announce plans to upgrade the system’s infrastructure.

Finally, we were curious how Integra Water/ONSWC would treat the area after such a major spill. They spread lime the night they finished the repair and then put down a light covering of straw over about 80% of the spill area. We do not feel that this is adequate and we are hopeful that the Briar Chapel HOA will engage their land use attorney to ensure that the community property is properly restored.

Irrigation Issues

There have been several large irrigation leaks/spills in the last week. In our last email we reported on an irrigation pipe break that occurred on July 26th at Great Meadows Park (across from 148 Beacon Ridge). The break created a large gush of reclaimed water that saturated the area, eventually running over the curb, down the road into the storm drain. (Video). Quality Landscaping cut off the pump and later fixed the pipe. On August 3rd, another pipe break occurred in the same place. This time it started before 6am and continued for just over two hours. (Video) Quality Landscaping has committed to fixing this again, after our current rain event.

Finally, on August 1st we had our largest documented irrigation spill. First reported at @ 10:30am, and called in to Integra Water, Envirolink, HOA, and First Residential this geyser of reclaimed water continued until @ 3:30pm. The site of the break was in the power easement next to the Bike Skills course off Briar Chapel Parkway up near the Veranda. The volume of water flowed down through the trails in that area and across a large section of the bike skills course, eventually flowing into a drainage area near Briar Chapel Parkway. Video Photo1 Photo2

We thank our residents for taking the time to report and photograph these incidents. When we can verify that the incident is a violation, we document the incident and submit it to NC DEQ.



Mission Statement

StopChathamNorth is an unincorporated non-profit association representing concerned homeowners within Briar Chapel. StopChathamNorth does NOT support a regional wastewater treatment plant within the residential community of Briar Chapel. We are aware that there are a number of new communities surrounding Briar Chapel that are planning to utilize our WWTP, in addition to the current proposal to add Fearrington Village to our WWTP. We are opposed to all of these plans to expand Briar Chapel’s WWTP for uses outside of the Briar Chapel residential community. We also believe that the WWTP and ONSWC must be fully compliant with all governance and regulatory guidelines to ensure operations do not create nuisance, unhealthy or hazardous conditions for Briar Chapel residents.

For more information: