Glen rejects Lystek project

Fonda resident Sal Carbone speaks out against Lystek at town of Glen Planning Board meeting Thursday. (The Leader-Herald/Briana O’Hara)

GLEN — The town of Glen Planning Board carried a motion to reject the Lystek application during their meeting Thursday.

The motion was carried following an announcement made by an attorney, Robert J. Kruger at Monday’s board meeting of a 1998 waste management facilities law which prohibits secondary processing of solid or liquid waste. This means Lystek International Inc. — the Canadian based biosolids company — legally is not allowed to move into the Glen Canal View Business Park.

The waste management law that was never rescinded or modified clashes with the changed zoning laws that were unanimously approved in December, which permitted 31 uses in the rural residential zone in the industrial park.

Steve Helmin, town historian said the town board can leave it as is or it can rescind the changed zoning laws.

Planning board member, Wanda Burch read a letter from Kruger which stated, “I spoke with John Thomas regarding the Lystek application. I informed him that it is my opinion that the application cannot be granted and is prohibited by the town waste management law. I would recommend that the planning board reject the application at the next meeting.”

The planning board discussed rejecting Lystek’s application, however, Lystek did not submit a full application. Brooks said they only received a draft that wasn’t complete.

“It really doesn’t come into consideration because Lystek already submitted something saying they don’t want their application [voted on] because it’s not complete,” Burch said. “There is nothing to vote on.”

“I think we should do what Mr. Kruger advised,” said planning board member Rosalie Farina. She said Lystek would like to revise their application. Although, Lystek did not complete their application, Farina thought they should vote on what Lystek did submit.

The planning board made a motion to reject Lystek application and the motion was carried.

Residents of Montgomery County spoke out against Lystek during a public comment portion of the meeting.

“It’s not clear to me if this is the end of this proposed plan or not, so I’d like to say what I intended to say anyway,” said Fultonville resident John Blanchard.

He said everything regarding the Lystek plant such as the possible smell, sewer sludge, lack of testing and regulation and toxic materials in sludge are all serious concerns.

“Not much has been said about what happens to the product,” Blanchard said. “It will be applied within a 40 mile radius of here by injection into the earth as fertilizer. That’s as far as Utica and Albany and includes all of Sacandaga Lake to the north and all of Schoharie County to the south. If you live in this area, everyday year after year, 600 tons of this fertilizer is coming to you and that’s where it stays.”

Sal Carbone, Fonda resident, spoke on how he doesn’t believe anyone on the planning board or town board know enough about Lystek or what the consequences are.

He said one of the issues is the Glen Canal View Business Park had been empty for 20 years is worth $12 million. “If that plant goes in, you’re potentially creating a dead zone here for yourself,” he said.

Carbone said even if the plant is put someplace else, there is going to be 150 thousand tons that is going to contaminated material that’s going to contaminate the land that will have an affect in the type of community and the type of economics that could take place.

“You’re the gatekeeper for the future here,” Carbone said to the board. “If something like this goes in or if this material gets spread in our area, that will have a profound effect on what type of community we have.”

Carbone left two resources on how to help municipalities to deal with sewer sludge. One being an ordinance from a county in Virginia and a paper written by a professor from Cornell who is also a lawyer.

By Kerry Minor

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