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SG-W:/ DEQ Denies Permit to Fill Scio Twp. Wetland




    Our group has worked for almost 2 yrs. to oppose irresponsible 
development on a 50 acre parcel of land in Scio Twp.  (South of Liberty, east 
of Scio Ridge Rd.)  This parcel contains 20 acres of wetland, approx. 15 
acres of mature wooded habitat, and many acres of rolling hills.  This is one 
of 2 documented Washtenaw Co. breeding sites for the wild indigo duskywing 
butterfly, currently on the state DNR "of special concern" list.
    The most recent development proposal from builder Del Corp. Homes was to 
cut down most of the mature trees, extensively grade the rolling hills, fill 
in a portion of the wetlands and to use the remaining wetland for storm water 
runoff in order to build 150 homes.  The Scio Twp. Planning Comm. and Board 
granted provisional PUD approval to this plan contingent upon DEQ approval to 
fill in the wetlands.  Interestingly, the builder openly stated their intent 
to stay outside of the jurisdiction of the County Drain Commissioner in the 
plans for retention of storm water, etc.
    The DEQ denied the permit application in full on July 25, 2000.  This was 
approximately 90 days after the well attended public hearing on the permit 
application.  The DEQ letter noted that the proposed project would have 
significant adverse impact on the natural resources associated with the 
wetlands on site and would impact on established biologic communities.  They 
also noted adverse impacts on sediment trapping, storm water retention 
capacity and nutrient assimilation capacity of the wetland if such a project 
were allowed.  Most of the major points raised by the concerned citizens at 
the DEQ hearing were addressed in the well written opinion.
    Many thanks to all of the individuals who communicated with us at 
different stages of this process.  The extensive support and assistance that 
we received was invaluable.  
    Please feel free to contact me to discuss this in greater detail.  
Additionally, several of us could provide future support and assistance to 
others who prepare for future DEQ hearings.  Persistence and hard work did 
pay off for us!
                                    Kathy Knol (665-3383)


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