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Bill to allow development on steeper slopes heads to the governor

A home under construction.
FILE PHOTO: Joey Mendolia
/
WTIU
Monroe County stormwater and planning experts said allowing development on steeper slopes could send sediment pollution into underground streams that resurface in other areas of the county.

A bill that aims to make more land available for housing in Monroe County by allowing development on steeper slopes is headed to the governor.

HB 1108's author, Rep. Dave Hall (R-Norman), said restricting developers from building on a slope steeper than 15 percent is unnecessary and prevents the county from building affordable homes.

His bill would increase the maximum slope to 25 percent — with an exemption for land that drains into drinking water reservoirs for cities and towns, like Lake Monroe.

Monroe County stormwater and planning experts said allowing development on steeper slopes could send sediment pollution into underground streams that resurface in other areas of the county.

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They also said building on steeper slopes could actually increase home prices because they would need more erosion control. A lot of land in the area is karst — a kind of porous rock prone to sinkholes.

Monroe County has denied few requests for a variance in slope.

The bill passed the state Senate on Monday, mostly along party lines. It's already passed the Indiana House.

Rebecca is our energy and environment reporter. Contact her at rthiele@iu.edu or follow her on Twitter at @beckythiele.

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Rebecca Thiele covers statewide environment and energy issues.