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DeWitt: Board approves moratorium

A six-month moratorium that affects proposed zone changes from Industrial to High Tech in three key districts was approved at the April 14 DeWitt Town Board meeting.

According to Councilor Irene Scruton, a proposed project within these districts would be eligible for development only if it fits under both categories: Industrial and High Tech. If the project was allowed in an Industrial district only and not High Tech, then a moratorium will go into effect, she said.

Changing a zone from an Industrial district to High Tech would stop heavy industrial plants from coming to town, like the proposed coal gasification plant by Empire Synfuel in Jamesville. In addition to banning general-purpose manufacturing or production plants, a High Tech district also prohibits general purpose warehousing and transportation, said Development and Operations Commissioner Dick Robb in a December interview with The DeWitt Times.

The main parts up for zoning map changes include the Interstate 481 corridor north of the railroad tracks and east to the town line with Manlius; a small area along Thompson Road near James Street slated for business district zoning, and three old quarries in Jamesville.

The DeWitt Town Board tabled the decision to change the zoning in these districts in December, mainly due to resident concerns and misunderstandings about codes. Since then, a committee was formed to study the zoning issues.

An informational meeting will take place at 7 p.m. Wednesday April 23 at the DeWitt Town Hall where the committee will discuss its research and findings. Public comments are welcome and encouraged.

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