Millsboro Residents Meet Over Proposed Chicken Plant - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Millsboro Residents Meet Over Proposed Chicken Plant

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MILLSBORO, Del. - The smell of vinegar from a pickle processing plant in Millsboro apparently did not bother too many residents. However, now that a chicken processing plant may take its place, quite a few feathers have been ruffled.

Allen Harim Foods coordinated a special meeting on Monday to allow residents to ventilate this heated debate, and many of them did not hold back.

"Here we are a resort community and it's not fair to the people that live here," said Bruce Ballantine, a Millsboro resident.

Some of the residents' homes are just a few yards away from the plant, which brings up many concerns, including the smell and the traffic. However, one of their biggest worries is the health of the community.

"We don't need anymore problems," said Ken Haynes, a Millsboro resident.

The plant is also just a few yards from the inland bays, and residents worry about waste from the plant contaminating the waterways.

So far, DNREC and Allen Harim Foods admit that no environmental studies have been done to assess how the area will be affected, but they are still in the early stages, and these studies can still happen in the future.

Despite residents' worries, state officials support the plan, and the money it could bring.

"These people are trying to be good neighbors," said Millsboro Democratic Representative John Atkins. "They're going to spend 100 million dollars at this facility upgrading it."

The chicken processing plant isn't expected to be completed until the spring of 2016.

In a separate meeting Monday, the Sussex County Board of Adjustments was set to vote on a "special use exception," for the potential of "hazardous use" at the site of the plant. This could include anything from water contamination, to noise pollution, or increased traffic in the area. However, the board unanimously decided to open the topic up for comments by local agencies and the public, which may take place in about a month.

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