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Planning Board discusses local projects

AMENIA — The Amenia Planning Board held a meeting on Thursday, Oct. 6, to discuss the Roxbury projects and the timber harvest projects occurring in the town.During the meeting, Planning Board Chair Bill Flood announced that Kippy Weigelt, the owner of the Roxbury Sand and Gravel, has withdrawn both applications put before the board.One of the applications was regarding the use of the Roxbury property as a storage location for wrapped pallets of bagged soil. The product would have been stockpiled on site during the fall and winter in preparation for the busy spring and summer seasons, which would have depleted the stockpile.The other application was regarding the use of the Roxbury property as a composting site for leaves, brush, grass clippings and manure. Composting on that property is banned by the town’s code because the property sits on top of the town’s aquifer. In order for that application to be approved, the town code would have needed to be changed.Flood said that the reason for withdrawing the applications was mostly due to the controversy surrounding the projects. Flood said that it was also difficult for the applicants to navigate the complicated application process without legal guidance and representation.The board also discussed a complaint submitted by the public regarding timber harvesting on Cascade Mountain.Prior to the meeting, the board fielded a complaint about excessive logging occurring on some forestry sites.The board members noted that they have not yet investigated the claim, but are looking into what the agreement with the forestry company allows.Flood noted that there is a limited amount of action that the board can take against timber harvesting because forestry is considered a form of agriculture.Amenia Planning Board meetings are held on the first and last Thursday of every month at 7 p.m. on the second floor of the Amenia Town Hall.The Planning Board will also hold a special joint meeting with the Zoning Board of Appeals on Wednesday, Oct. 19, at 7 p.m. at the Town Hall. That meeting will discuss the renewal of the special use permit for the cell phone tower in Amenia.

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