Town puts off decision that could shut down the Fulton Speedway
Thu, 13 Oct 2011 23:29:56 GMT —
The Volney Town Board is putting off a decision that could shut down the Fulton Speedway.
The town was considering expanding a 2008 noise ordinance that would limit the number of races at the track. But board members tabled the decision at Thursday's meeting.
More than 100 people showed up to Thursday night's standing-room only Town Board meeting. Most of them were there to speak out in support of the Fulton Speedway. But Michael Hammond is fighting to keep the noise down. He leaves right near the track and says the sound keeps him up at night. "This is still a residential zone, there are 30 houses on my street. All we want is to be treated like everyone else in town and not have our quality of life impacted," he said.
"I can understand the people who live close by but it's been there for 50 years, why is there a problem now," said Jeremy Pitcher who came out to support the speedway. "I've gone to the track all my life and I would hate to see it go."
The marketing director at the track, Corey Reed, says if the new law passed, the speedway would only be able to hold 12 races a year, and those races would have to end before 11:00 pm. The speedway would also have to eliminate its major two-day event it holds each October. He says with those restrictions, the speedway would no longer be economically viable.
Those in support of the speedway says Volney cannot afford to lose a major economic engine. "We employ 60 people, we pay a lot of taxes so why would the county, the state or the town want to lose that revenue," said Harvey Fink, former owner of the speedway.
Track officials say it also contributes to the local economy because people travel to the speedway to watch races.
There was a suggestion at Thursday's public hearing about building a buffer around the track that would help block out noise for area neighbors. Town leaders say they will now go back to the drawing board and try to find a solution that makes everyone happy.