Residents of Snow Camp, an unincorporated community in southern Alamance County, have taken legal action to demand that the county enforce the Heavy Industrial Development Ordinance. The ordinance regulates industrial land use for the health and safety of residential and commercial areas.
The lawsuit, filed by residents and the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League, claims Alamance County has ignored the ordinance. Residents say a proposed rock quarry in their community would threaten their air quality and access to well water.
Snow Camp is a rural township located 20 miles west of Chapel Hill and 30 miles east of Greensboro. The community has approximately 6,000 residents and relies on wells as the only water source.
Donna Poe, a Snow Camp resident, said despite the fact that they've been fighting the permit for the stone mining project for 20 months, the community is not "anti-mine."
"All along we've been wanting to protect our communities from the threat to our water, air, homes, health, safety, well-being," she said. "We're not against mines, but in the middle of Snow Camp, that just never made, and continues to not make, any sense. They can go mine in a more appropriate location."
Alamance County has 30 days to respond to the lawsuit.
Poe said she and the rest of the Snow Camp residents are in this for the long run.
"We know it's going to be probably four to five months maybe to get a hearing," she said. "We hope for a decision by the court to declare this permit invalid. We're in this to do whatever it takes."