Residents speak out against plant

Karen Chaplin, standing, speaks during public comment portion of the planning board's regular meeting on Thursday. (The Leader Herald/Briana O'Hara)

GLEN — Residents came together Thursday night during the town of Glen Planning Board meeting to speak out against the Lystek plant, a waste treatment technology company based in Canada.

Representatives of the Lystek company were also there at the meeting, but did not make any comments, nor did they respond to any questions that were asked by residents.

Although council members of the town board passed a resolution on Dec. 11, changing the zoning of the Glen Business Park from rural residential to industrial, no actions were taken at the Thursday night’s meeting regarding future plans with the Lystek company.

Planning board chairman, John Thomas said Lystek officials will speak at a meeting Jan. 18 and will submit their formal application. A public hearing will then be held some time in February.

Each resident was given three minutes to speak and express their concerns regarding the Lystek company.

Rosalie Farina, of Fultonville, first spoke on what the Lystek company is, what they do and how their product is allegedly hazardous.

Farina listed several heavy metals that aren’t regulated in class A biosolids, also known as sewer sludge, that the Lystek company uses in their biosolids. Farina alleged how these heavy metals can cause significant health problems including cancer, damage to kidneys and damages to nervous and digestive systems.

Farina also alleged that major food processes such as Heinz, Campbells, Progresso and Green Giant do not accept produce or anything grown on land that have been treated with biosolids.

“Why would Montgomery County want to support an industry that is harmful to the environment and the human health?” Farina said.

Chad Quackenbush, board member of Fultonville, said they passed a resolution at an emergency meeting Wednesday.

“I just wanted to let everyone know that we passed a resolution saying that we would have a say in what goes into our sewer system and who hooks up to our sewer and water, so by law it would have to be approved by our village.

He said he would not vote to allow a company such as the Lystek company into the community.

Terri Woodbeck, resident, had several concerns and questions of the Lystek company.

She said her biggest question was, “What is this company looking to bring to this area to make it more viable, to bring more business in here other than polluting the area?”

Thomas answered the question and said the construction project alone is a $10 million construction project, and will create 10-20 good jobs and they would be the largest tax payers within the town.

Peter Farina spoke about a biosolids company that has gone bankrupt.

Stella Gittle then expressed concerns that if the Lystek company were to go out of business, what would happen to the building.

“How do we get rid of that? Does it end up being another Beech-Nut?” Gittle asked. “You will be branding the town of Glen as the sewer sludge town.”

Tim Morford, board member of Fultonville had concerns for what would happen if a truck went off the road and spilled bio-waste.

Thomas suggested everyone continue to attend meetings and to go to the public hearing that will be scheduled for some time in February.