DHEC fines housing developer $15,000

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By Johnathan Ryan

INDIAN LAND _ Lawson's Bend LLC, developer of Indian Land's Edenmoor subdivision, was recently fined $15,000 after conferences last year with the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control regarding inspections at the work site.

The fine was received in early January and Lawson's Bend spokesman Sean Calloway said Jan. 30 that it will be paid within two weeks. He said, however, that contractor BRS will actually pay the fine since it was responsible for placing silt fences on the site, which were used to control sediment and silt run-off during sewer construction.

The sewers are now complete, Calloway said.

The problem was that fencing in some spots was sagging, but those spots represented a small part of the total fencing used to control the run-off, he said.

"Out of the five miles of silt fence, some were sagging a little bit," Calloway said.

Nonetheless, the company was cited and fined for violating DHEC regulations.

Lawson's Bend officials met with DHEC officials in October to discuss problems discovered during inspections of the work site in summer 2007, one of which involved the quality of the fencing.

Another area of contention between Lawson's Bend and the state in 2007 was the construction of the Twelve Mile Creek bridge within the development, which was built last year at the cost of $1 million, without a state permit.

The company received a belated DHEC permit late last year after being informed by DHEC that it would be required since the creek is considered "navigable" waters, a point the company has always disputed.

Phase 1 of the project is almost done, Calloway said, which includes the construction of various infrastructure and the necessary land preparation for five different types of home lots.

About 25-30 homes, including model homes, have been built so far, according to Ryland Homes sales rep Rebekah Gavagan. The first family moved into the development in November.

But sales have been lagging due to the nationwide mortgage crisis, Calloway said. It's a situation the company certainly didn't expect, he said.

"People are having a harder time selling their homes elsewhere to move here," he said.

Work has already started on Phase 2 of the project, which includes a parkway that will lead to the $4.2 million public recreation complex the company will create and donate to Lancaster County, which will maintain it.

It is expected to be ready for use by August.

Contact Johnathan Ryan at 416-8416 or jryan@thelancasternews.com