§ 153.121  WSW WATER SUPPLY WATERSHED OVERLAY DISTRICT.
   (A)   Authority and enactment.  The Legislature of the State of North Carolina has in G.S. Chapter 143, Article 21, Watershed Protection Rules, delegated the responsibility to local governmental units to adopt regulations designed to promote the public health, safety and general welfare of the citizenry. The City Council does hereby ordain and enact into law this section as the Watershed Protection Standards for the city. Additionally, the most recent versions of U.S.G.S. 1:24,000 (7.5 minute) scale topographic maps covering the city’s extraterritorial jurisdiction are adopted to provide for interpretation of water supply watershed criteria.
   (B)   Definitions.  For the purpose of this section, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning. The definitions listed herein are to be used for Water Supply Watershed Overlay District purposes and do not change or preempt any definitions applicable to the remainder of this chapter.
      10/70 OPTION.  A development option that allows development up to 70% built-upon area in 10% of the WS-IV PA Overlay District.
      ANIMAL UNIT.  A unit of measurement developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that is used to compare different types of animal operations.
      BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES (BMP).  A structural or nonstructural management-based practice used singularly or in combination to reduce nonpoint source inputs to receiving waters in order to achieve water quality protection goals.
      BUFFER.  An area of natural or planted vegetation through which stormwater runoff flows in a diffused manner so that the runoff does not become channelized and which provides for infiltration of the runoff and filtering of pollutants. The BUFFER is measured landward from the normal pool elevation of impounded structures and from the bank of each side of streams or rivers.
      BUILT-UPON AREA.  Includes the portion of a development project that is covered by impervious or partially impervious cover including buildings, pavement, gravel area (e.g., roads, parking lot, paths), recreation facilities (e.g., tennis courts) and the like. (Wooden slatted decks and the water area of a swimming pool are considered pervious.)
      COMPOSTING FACILITY.  A facility in which only stumps, limbs, leaves, grass and untreated wood collected from land clearing or landscaping operations is deposited.
      CRITICAL AREA.  The area adjacent to a water supply intake or reservoir where risk associated with pollution is greater than from the remaining portions of the watershed. The critical area is defined as extending either one-half mile from the normal pool elevation of the reservoir in which the intake is located or to the ridge line of the watershed (whichever comes first); or one-half mile upstream from the intake located directly in the stream or river (run-of-the-river), or the ridge line of the watershed (whichever comes first).
      EXISTING DEVELOPMENT.  Those projects that are built or those projects that at a minimum have established a vested right as of the effective date of this chapter based on at least one of the following criteria:
         (a)   Substantial expenditures of resources (time, labor, money) based on a good faith reliance upon having received a valid zoning permit to proceed with the project;
         (b)   Having an outstanding valid building permit as authorized by § 153.058 of this chapter and G.S. § 160A-385.1); or
         (c)   Having expended substantial resources (time, labor, money) and having an approved site specific or phased development plan as authorized by §§ 153.345 through 153.354 of this chapter and G.S. § 160A-385.1.
      HAZARDOUS MATERIAL.  Any substance listed as that in:  SARA § 302, Extremely Hazardous Substances; CERCLA Hazardous Substances; or CWA § 311 (oil and hazardous substances).
      LANDFILL.  A facility for the disposal of solid waste on land in a sanitary manner in accordance with G.S. Chapter 130A, Article 9. For the purpose of this section, this term does not include composting facilities.
      LOW DENSITY OPTION.  A development option whereby built-upon area shall not exceed the following standards:
         (a)   In WS-IV-CA:  24%; and
         (b)   In WS-IV-PA:  24% when developed with curb and gutter; 36% when developed without curb and gutter.
      MAJOR VARIANCE.
         (a)   As applies to any development that must meet water supply watershed standards, a variance that results in any one or more of the following:
            1.   The complete waiver of a management requirement; or
            2.   The relaxation, by a factor of more than 10%, of any management requirement that takes the form of a numerical standard.
         (b)   Any request for a MAJOR VARIANCE must be approved or denied by the Board of Adjustment or City Council and the North Carolina Environmental Management Commission.
      MINOR VARIANCE.  A variance that does not qualify as a major variance.
      NONRESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT.  All development other than residential development, agriculture and silviculture.
      TOXIC SUBSTANCE.  Any substance or combination of substances (including disease causing agents), which after discharge and upon exposure, ingestion, inhalation, or assimilation into any organism, either directly from the environment or indirectly by ingestion through food chains, has the potential to cause death, disease, behavioral abnormalities, cancer, genetic mutations, physiological malfunctions (including malfunctions or suppression in reproduction or growth) or physical deformities in the organisms or their offspring or other adverse health effects.
      WATER DEPENDENT STRUCTURE.  Any structure for which the use requires access to or proximity to or siting within surface waters to fulfill its basic purpose, such as boat ramps, boathouses, docks and bulkheads. Ancillary facilities such as restaurants, outlets for boat supplies, parking lots and commercial boat storage areas are not WATER DEPENDENT STRUCTURES.
      WATERSHED.  The entire land area contributing surface drainage to a specific point (e.g., the water supply).
   (C)   Exceptions to applicability.
      (1)   Nothing contained herein shall repeal, modify or amend any federal or state law or regulation, or any ordinance or regulation pertaining thereto; nor shall any provision of this section amend, modify, or restrict any provisions of the code of ordinances of the city; however, the adoption of this section shall and does amend any and all ordinances, resolutions, and regulations in effect in the city at the time of the adoption of this section that may be construed to impair or reduce the effectiveness of this section or to conflict with any of this its provisions.
      (2)   It is not intended that these regulations interfere with any easement, covenants or other agreements between parties. However, if the provisions of these regulations impose greater restrictions or higher standards for the use of building or land, then the provisions of these regulations shall control.
      (3)   Existing development, as defined in this section, is not subject to the requirements of this section. Expansions to structures classified as existing development must meet the requirements of this section, however, the built-upon area of the existing development is not required to be included in the density calculations.
      (4)   A pre-existing lot owned by an individual prior to the effective date of this section, regardless of whether or not a vested right has been established, may be developed for single-family residential purposes without being subject to the restrictions of this section. However, this exemption is not applicable to multiple contiguous lots under single ownership.
   (D)   Enforcement and penalties.  The provisions of § 153.999 of this chapter shall apply when any development of land violates any provision of this section.
   (E)   Effective date.  This section shall take effect and be in force on July 1, 1993.
   (F)   Watershed Areas described.
      (1)   WS-IV Watershed Areas - Critical Area (WS-IV-CA).  Only new development activities that require an erosion/sedimentation control plan under state law are required to meet the provisions of this section. In order to address a moderate to high land use intensity pattern, single-family residential uses are allowed at a maximum of two dwelling units per acre. All other residential and nonresidential development shall be allowed 24% built-upon area. New sludge application sites and landfills are specifically prohibited.
         (a)   Permitted uses.
            1.   Agriculture subject to the provisions of the Food Security Act of 1985 and the Food, Agriculture, Conservation and Trade Act of 1990. Agricultural activities conducted after January 1, 1993 shall have a minimum ten-foot vegetative buffer, or equivalent control as determined by the Soil and Water Conservation Commission, along all perennial waters indicated on the most recent version of the U.S.G.S. 1:24,000 (7.5 minute) scale topographic map. Animal operations greater than 100 animal units shall employ best management practices by July 1, 1994, recommended by the Soil and Water Conservation Commission.
            2.   Silviculture, subject to the provisions of the Forest Practices Guidelines related to Water Quality (15 NCAC II.6101-.0209, as amended).
            3.   Residential.  (See division (F)(1)(b) for specific development guidelines.)
            4.   Nonresidential development, excluding;
               a.    The storage of toxic and hazardous materials unless a spill containment plan is implemented;
               b.   Landfills; and
               c.   Sites for land application of sludge residuals or petroleum contaminated soils.
         (b)    Density and built-upon limits.
            1.   Single-family residential, including planned developments:  shall not exceed two dwelling units per acre on a project-by-project basis. No residential lot shall be less than one-half acre, except within an approved planned development as described in §§ 153.215 through 153.220 of this chapter.
            2.   All other residential and nonresidential:  development shall not exceed 24% built-upon area on a project-by-project basis. For the purposes of calculating the built-upon area, total project area shall include total acreage in the tract on which the project is to be developed.
      (2)   WS-IV Watershed Areas - Protected Area (WS-IV-PA).  Only new development activities that require an erosion/sedimentation control plan under state law are required to meet the provisions of this section. In order to address a moderate to high land use intensity pattern, single-family residential uses shall develop at a maximum density of two dwelling units per acre. All other residential and nonresidential developments shall be allowed at a maximum of 24% built-upon area. A maximum of three dwelling units per acre or 36% built-upon area is allowed for projects without a curb and gutter street system.
         (a)   Permitted uses.
            1.   Agriculture subject to the provisions of the Food Security Act of 1985 and the Food, Agricultural, Conservation and Trade Act of 1990.
            2.   Silviculture, subject to the provisions of the Forest Practices Guidelines related to Water Quality (15 NCAC II.6101-.0209).
            3.   Residential development. (See division (F)(1)(b) for specific development guidelines.)
            4.   Nonresidential development, excluding the storage of toxic and hazardous materials unless a spill containment plan is implemented.
         (b)   Density and built-upon limits.
            1.   Single-family residential, including PRDs:  development shall not exceed two dwelling units per acre, as defined on a project-by-project basis. No residential lot shall be less than one-half acre, or one-third acre for projects without a curb and gutter system.
            2.   All other residential, including planned developments and nonresidential: development shall not exceed 24% built-upon area on a project basis. For projects without a curb and gutter street system, development shall not exceed 36% built-upon area on a project-by-project basis. For the purpose of calculating built-upon area, total project area shall include acreage in the tract on which the project is to be developed.
   (G)   Buffer areas required adjacent to perennial waters.
      (1)   A vegetated buffer is required on both sides of perennial (year-round flowing) streams and other perennial waters, such as permanent lakes and ponds, for all new development activities as follows:
         (a)   Buffer width on each side of the stream shall be 100 feet for development activities exceeding the low-density option;
         (b)   Buffer width on each side of the stream shall be 30 feet for all uses that do not exceed the low-density option;
         (c)   Perennial streams and waters shall be those indicated on the most recent versions of U.S.G.S. 1:24,000 (7.5 minute) scale topographic maps; and
         (d)   Desirable artificial stream bank and shoreline stabilization is allowed within vegetated buffers.
      (2)   No new development is allowed in the buffer except for water dependent structures and public projects such as road crossings and greenways where no practical alternative exists. These activities should minimize built-upon surface area, direct runoff away from the surface waters and maximize the utilization of stormwater best management practices.
   (H)   Rules governing the interpretation of watershed area boundaries.  Where uncertainty exists as to the boundaries of the watershed areas, as shown on the zoning map, the following rules shall apply.
      (1)   Where area boundaries are indicated as approximately following either street, alley, railroad or highway lines or centerlines thereof, the lines shall be construed to be the boundaries.
      (2)   Where area boundaries are indicated as approximately following lot lines, the lot lines shall be construed to be the boundaries. However, a surveyed plat prepared by a registered land surveyor may be submitted to the city as evidence that one or more properties along these boundaries do not lie within the watershed area.
      (3)   Where the watershed area boundaries lie at a scaled distance more than 25 feet from any parallel lot line, the location of the watershed area boundaries shall be determined by use of the scale appearing on the zoning map.
      (4)   Where the watershed area boundaries lie at a scaled distance of 25 feet or less from any parallel lot line, the location of watershed area boundaries shall be construed to be the lot line.
      (5)   Where other uncertainty exists, the Zoning Administrator shall interpret the zoning map as to the location of the boundaries. This decision may be appealed to the Board of Adjustment.
   (I)   Application of regulations.
      (1)   No building or land shall hereafter be used and no development shall take place except in conformity with the regulations herein specified for the watershed area in which it is located.
      (2)   No area required for the purpose of complying with the provisions of this section shall be included in the area required for another building.
      (3)   Every residential building, which must comply with this section and is hereafter erected, moved or structurally altered shall be located on a lot which conforms to the regulations herein specified, except as permitted in division (J) below.
      (4)   If the use or class of use is not specifically indicated as being allowed in the watershed area, the use or class of use is prohibited.
   (J)   Existing development.  Any existing development as defined in this section may be continued and maintained subject to the provisions provided herein. Expansions to structures classified as existing development must meet the requirements of this section, however, the built-upon area of the existing development is not required to be included in the density calculations.
      (1)   Vacant lots.  This category consists of vacant lots for which plats or deeds have been recorded in the office of the Register of Deeds of the county. A lot may be used for any of the uses allowed in the watershed area in which it is located, provided that where the lot area is less than the minimum specified in this section, the Zoning Administrator is authorized to issue a zoning permit.
      (2)   Uses of land.  This category consists of uses existing at the time of the adoption of this section where the use of the land is not permitted to be established hereafter in the watershed area in which it is located. The uses may be continued as follows:
         (a)   When the use of land has been changed to an allowed use, it shall not thereafter revert to any prohibited use;
         (b)   The uses of land shall be changed only to an allowed use; and
         (c)   When the use ceases for a period of at least one year, it shall not be re-established.
      (3)   Reconstruction of buildings or built-upon areas.  Any existing building or built-upon area not in conformance with the restrictions of this section that has been damaged or removed may be repaired and/or reconstructed, provided that:
         (a)   Notwithstanding the requirements of §§ 153.135 through 153.145 of this chapter, repairs or reconstruction is initiated within 180 days from the date of damage or removal; and
         (b)   The total amount of space devoted to the built-upon area may not be increased unless the additional built-upon area meets the requirements of the low density option or the 10/70 option, whichever is applicable to the proposed development. In that case, the previous built-upon area shall not be used to calculate maximum built-upon area for the expansion.
   (K)   Permits.
      (1)   No building or built-upon area shall be erected, moved, enlarged or structurally altered, nor shall any building permit be issued nor shall any change in the use of any building or land be made until a zoning permit has been issued by the Zoning Administrator. No permit shall be issued except in conformity with the provisions of this section.
      (2)   Permit applications shall be filed with the Zoning Administrator. The application shall include a completed application form and supporting documentation required in division (K)(3) below as follows.
      (3)   Additional contents of application for zoning permit within the water supply Watershed Overlay District. In addition to the information required by §§ 153.255 through 153.261 of this chapter the following information shall be required for all projects that must meet the requirements of these regulations:
         (a)   The square footage and percent of built-upon area;
         (b)   For residential projects, total dwelling units and dwelling units per acre;
         (c)   The accurate location of all perennial streams and natural drainage areas on the property;
         (d)   The location and landscaping proposed for all required buffer areas;
         (e)   Two reproducible copies of the plans and specifications for proposed drainage facilities, including approximate location and dimension of open drainage ways, storm sewers, culverts, retaining ponds or areas where water is to be diverted through grading, designed either by a North Carolina registered engineer or landscape architect, to the extent that G.S. Chapter 89A, allow;
         (f)   Written verification that a soil erosion and sedimentation control plan has been submitted to the approved by the appropriate state agency; and
         (g)   Permit application fees as set by the City Council.
      (4)   Prior to issuance of a zoning permit, the Zoning Administrator may consult with qualified personnel for assistance to determine if the application meets the requirements of this chapter.
      (5)   Notwithstanding the requirements of § 153.255(C)(3) of this chapter, a zoning permit that requires compliance with water supply watershed standards shall expire if a building permit or watershed occupancy permit for the use it not obtained by the applicant within six months from the date of issuance.
   (L)   Building permit required.  No permit required under the North Carolina State Building Code shall be issued for any activity for which a zoning permit requiring watershed protection compliance until that permit is issued.
   (M)   Watershed protection occupancy permit.
      (1)   The Zoning Administrator shall issue a watershed protection occupancy permit certifying that all requirements of this section have been met prior to the occupancy of a building hereafter erected, altered or moved and/or prior to the change of the use of any building or land.
      (2)   Watershed protection occupancy permit, either for all or part of a building, shall be applied for at the same time as application for a zoning permit and shall be issued or denied within ten days after the erection or structural alterations of the building.
      (3)   When only a change in use of land or existing building occurs, the Zoning Administrator shall issue a watershed protection occupancy permit certifying that all requirements of this section have been met.
      (4)   If the watershed protection occupancy permit is denied, the Zoning Administrator shall notify the applicant in writing stating the reasons for denial.
      (5)   No building or structure that has been erected, moved or structurally altered may be occupied until the Zoning Administrator has approved and issued a watershed protection permit.
   (N)   10/70 option.
      (1)   In addition to the built upon restrictions for the protected area of WS-IV as stated in division (F)(2) above, new development and expansions to existing development may occupy no more than 10% of the protected area located within the Stanley/Hoyle Creek, Lincolnton/South Fork Catawba River, and High Shoals/South Fork Catawba River Watersheds. Projects may be developed up to a maximum of 70% built-upon area. Plans for development using the 10/70 option shall be subject to review and approval by the Zoning Administrator and subject to all rules and procedures as established in division (K) above. Such additional intensity allocation authorized by the 10/70 option must comply with all other applicable provisions of the overlay district including 100 foot buffers adjacent to perennial waters as outlined in division (G) above. The Zoning Administrator shall keep records of the city’s use of the 10/70 option. Allocation of the watershed acreage to be developed under this option shall be determined on a first come-first serve basis.
      (2)   Once the 10% allocation is exhausted in each watershed this chapter should be amended to include the high-density option.
   (O)   Appeals.  Appeals of administrative decisions and interpretations of this article may be made to the Board of Adjustment under the procedures described in §§ 153.275 through 153.281. Applicants may seek variances only from the low-density regulations of this subchapter under the procedures described in §§ 153.275 through 153.281, provided that the Zoning Administrator shall mail a copy of the public notice of a variance request by first-class mail to all other jurisdictions within the watershed protection area established for the applicable watershed and any entity using the watershed for water consumption 15 days prior to the meeting date. The Zoning Administrator shall report all variances granted in the preceding 12 months to the Environmental Management Commission in January of each year. The City Council shall hear all appeals for variances from the high-density option regulations of this section following the variance procedures established by this section and §§ 153.275 through 153.281. When the City Council finds that a variance from the high-density option regulations is necessary in unique circumstances to accommodate important social and economic development, it shall prepare a record of the appeal, the evidence presented, its deliberations and findings and its proposed decision, including all conditions or modifications it proposes. The City Council shall send this record and its variance request to the Environmental Management Commission that may grant, grant with modifications or deny the request. The Commission shall notify the City Council in writing of its decision. If the Environmental Management Commission approves the variance request, any conditions or stipulations it requires shall become part of the high-density permit. Final decisions of the Commission may be appealed under the Administrative Procedures Act of G.S. Chapter 150B, as amended.
   (P)   Facilities involved in the use, storage or manufacturing of hazardous materials.
      (1)   The following is a list containing the names and locations of facilities on record that use, store or manufacture hazardous materials within the watershed.
 
Acme, Inc.
Buck Saver
2510 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Ed’s Handy Mart #2
633 Riverside Drive
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Bell South
Southern Bell
315 S. Aspen Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Southern Bell
237 Sigmon Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
City of Lincolnton
Water Treatment Plant
1338 Reepsville Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Wastewater Treatment Plant
550 W. Highway 150 By-pass
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Fire Department
116 W. Sycamore Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Public Works Department
128 Motz Avenue
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Conoco, Inc.
2230 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Lincoln County
Solid Waste Department
330 W. Church Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
County Jail
208 S. Government Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Burris Mfg. Co.
1164 Burris Boulevard
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Carolina Mills
Plant #5
564 South Grove Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Plant #6
569 South Grove Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Cochrane Furniture Co.
190 Cochrane Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
201 Industrial Park Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
202 Industrial Park Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Dixie Yarns
North State Knitting
1032 N. Flint Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Duke Power Company
Operations Center
121 Dave Warlick Drive
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Ferrell Gas
111-A Dave Warlick Drive
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Bulk Plan Site
South Grove Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
Gastonia United Oil Co.
 
Mr. B.’s Food Mart
2412 East Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Hoyle’s  2
1210 East Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Hoyle’s  3
1316 North Aspen Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
General Marble
350 North 321 By-pass
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Lincoln Correctional Ctr.
150 Prison Camp Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Lincoln County Schools
Administrative Office
2660 North Highway 321
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Asbury Elementary
310 Salem Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Battleground Elementary
201 Jeb Seagle Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
G.E. Massey Elementary
1435 East Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Lincolnton Middle School
301 Jeb Seagle Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Lincolnton High School
803 North Aspen Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Love Memorial Elementary
1463 Love Memorial School Rd.
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
McMurray Industries
1140 N. Flint Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Mohican Mills
1419 Gaston Street Ext.
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
North State Knitting
1032 N. Flint Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Rhodes & Beal Oil Co.
1404 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Roses Stores
1603 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
South Fork Industries
535 Elm Grove Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Southern States
202 W. Pine Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
J.P. Stevens Company
2130 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
J.P. Converters & Ind.
2130 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Times Oil Corporation
1500 E. Main Street
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
Vermont American Corp.
124 Legionaire Road
Lincolnton, NC  28092
 
   (2)   This list was obtained from the County Emergency Management records.
 
(Prior UDO, § 7.20)  (Ord. O-03-18, passed 4-5-2018)  Penalty, see § 153.999