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      Sullivan neighbors fight proposed quarry plan citing safety and noise concerns

      David Smith says he wouldn't have bought his 160 acre plot of land in the Town of Sullivan if he knew a quarry could be built right next door.

      "I am at the epicenter of the problem," he said. "I worry about conserving the land... clearly worried about the environmental aspects."

      Tuesday night, he joined a crowded room of people feeling the same way. Madison County neighbors were expressing worries about increased traffic, noise and safety if plans for a proposed quarry on Quarry Road goes through.

      "Some of the numbers I've heard, 200 or 300 trucks a day going up and down our roads," said Bill Blanding. "Water is a concern, we are all on private wells up there. Our property values."

      Neighbors say it's been a frustrating six years in what they call a drawn-out legal battle.

      "This property has been protected by the Town of Sullivan repeatedly," said Smith. But after a number of appeals a court recently reversed a decision, siding with the quarry developer, and effectively allowing mining on agricultural zoned land without needing a special permit.

      Now, this group would like a ban on mining until the Town of Sullivan could update it's zoning laws which the neighbors say are outdated.

      "I t would be good to put a morato r ium in place to cool down, and let's write very good and tight zoning laws that are fair to the neighbors, farmers, and to developers as well so that everybody knows straight up what we are dealing with ," said Smith.

      There is already a quarry along Quarry Road. "We have one quarry there, there's another three miles away. We don't want another one," said Blanding.

      One quarry owner spoke out at the meeting saying there is another side to the story, and there are responsible ways to mine.

      A call to Thomas Oot, the proposed quarry's developer, was not returned.

      What do you think of the proposed quarry?