Put health and welfare first on concrete plant vote

It has been said that the measure of a country can be observed by how well it cares for its citizens least able to care for themselves. Applying this measure to our county level, this letter appeals to the Madison County Board of Commissioners and all county officials. Please consider the health and welfare of our oldest and youngest residents when you consider the application to place a concrete plant in Marshall.

That is exactly what you are being asked to consider: Should a concrete plant be allowed in close proximity to a residential area (100 feet from the property line), Elderberry Nursing home with 100 residents (less than a half-mile away) and BK Daycare with 63 children aged from birth through kindergarten (only 400 yards away)? … The acknowledged release of 1,300 pounds of particulates every year (year after year after year) containing arsenic, beryllium, cadmium, chromium, lead and other heavy metals (all known to cause serious health problems), combined with industrial-level noise pollution, quickly tells you that you would not want to live or have your parent, grandparent or child exposed to this pollution.

Why would people, especially in today's difficult economy, object to a business coming to their town that was going to bring jobs? Why would Buncombe put a moratorium on concrete plants in its county? Because they know, and we know, that this type of industry must be located a safe distance from peoples' living areas. They know that this type of business provides very few jobs compared to the negative impacts. They know the potential for blighting the area and thereby negatively impacting the existing job and tax base. They know it will attract more "dirty" industry and repel future "clean" industry.

I believe Madison County to be a caring, tight-knit community, a community that still understands the importance of taking care of its own. I believe the commissioners respect the generations that came before them, and are interested in protecting the future of those yet to come. … Show us the true measure of your heart. Let it be known that there are still places in this country where citizen welfare is treasured before corporate or individual greed. Thank you.

— Tim Ruemler

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