Neighbors battle zoning change in Indian Land

- Tensions were running high at a Lancaster County Council meeting on Monday. Many people are fighting against a rezoning change for an Indian Land business that’s been in place for more than 18 years.

The fight for a zoning change appears far from over. One lawsuit by a business owner is in the mix, and more could be filed against Lancaster County.

About 70 residents of the Bridgemill community added a little space to the Lancaster County Council meeting on Monday by standing for that they believe in.

They don’t want to see the McClancy Seasoning Company, which has been in business for years, rezoned to light industrial. A mistake more than 18 years ago, zoned the spice company as residential.

Now, nearly 20 years later, the owner wants the mistake fixed and rezoned to build an expansion. He asked for the rezone in 2015, but it was denied.

Now a lawsuit has been filed and the county is reconsidering.

“A lot of residents feel a blanket was pulled over their head and they bought a very expensive home in a high-end community and now all of a sudden they are fixing a zoning mistake in their backyard,” Melissa Williams said, neighbor.

Neighbors are worried the rezoning could bring unwanted businesses if the spice company closed.

“More houses next to my backyard is fine. A recycling plant is not. A large concrete truck port with loading docks and traffic…our options under light industrial is not OK,” Williams explained.

Council members heard the concerns and approved the zoning chance but with one stipulation. The property would stay light industrial only if it remains as a food processing plant.

“You can’t count on it to stay a food industrial plant. He could sell and light industry could come in,” Henry Korff said, neighbor.

For the rezoning to take effect, county council will have to approve the motion again at their next meeting. Residents said if that happens, the change would be considered spot zoning, which is illegal in South Carolina – opening up the possibilities for another lawsuit. 

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