Quarry Road lawsuits begin

Builder Tom Oot and his partners at Subdivisions Inc. filed Article 78 papers with the Madison County Clerk's Office Thursday. The move comes after the town of Sullivan Zoning Board of Appeals decided June 14 to stick by the determination of Codes Enforcement Officer Lawrence J. Kinne that the business's proposed quarry is not located within an industrial zone and that mining is not a permitted use in agricultural zones.

The Article 78 petition asks for a judicial directive annulling the town of Sullivan's Local Law No. 1 for 2007 and compelling the town to issue Subdivisions Inc. a special use permit for its proposed quarry.

Local Law No. 1 re-defined "mineral resources" and "mining" in an effort by the town to clarify murky zoning laws that created difficulty for the town's planning and zoning boards in establishing whether a quarry was permitted in an agricultural zone on Quarry Road.

Subdivisions Inc. began researching the feasibility of opening a quarry on Quarry Road in the town of Sullivan in 2004. In his affidavit, Oot said he received approval to move ahead with the project from former Supervisor John E. Gladney. Since that time, Subdivisions Inc. has expended between $150,000 and $200,000 on the studies and reviews required to obtain the necessary permits, Oot stated in the document.

Last year, the town council received draft and final environmental impact statements and voted to allow the state Department of Environmental Conservation to be the lead agency on the project. In October, neighbors were notified of a public hearing on the special use permit application and turned out in force to oppose it.

Since that time, Quarry Road resident Carsten Juchheim has led a grassroots effort to block the project, investing thousands of dollars of his own money toward the initiative and founding the web site quarryroad.org to keep area residents apprised of progress on the proposed quarry.

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