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Big crowd turns out to oppose quarry in Shelby

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 April 2014 at 12:00 am

About 250 attend hearing at Town Hall

Photos by Tom Rivers – Shelby resident Russell Cree speaks against a proposed quarry, saying it would be disruptive to a peaceful neighborhood.

Town Hall was packed with residents tonight during a public hearing about a proposed quarry on Fletcher Chapel Road.

SHELBY – Town Hall was at capacity – and then some – for a public hearing tonight about a proposed quarry on Fletcher Chapel Road.

Residents voiced concerns about the proposed quarry’s impact on nearby residential wells, the Iroquois Wildlife Refuge, and a proposed high-tech manufacturing park only a few miles away in the town of Alabama. That site is projected to have 10,000 jobs at full build-out. The state has committed $33 million in this year’s budget to advance that project.

The quarry would have a 75-year mining life. The 215-acre site would add 15 jobs to the community, according to Frontier Stone LLC.

The company has been working eight years on studies to get its draft environmental impact statement accepted by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. The DEC held a public hearing about that 1,000-page plus report, and 250 residents turned out for the 2 ½ hour hearing.

Residents said the quarry would bring dust, noise, vibrations, heavy trucks, and foul water to a quiet and pristine area.

Brian McCarty lives on Dunlap Road. He enjoys the wildlife in the community, and said the refuge needs to remain a sanctuary for birds and animals.

“There is a higher calling as stewards of the earth that we all have to address,” he said at the hearing.  “Where will the eagles go?”

Orleans Hub will have more on the hearing later.