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Letter to the Editor

 

Rebecca C. McClear, Jean Koski

2:43 pm

Independent Editor,
Does anyone except the Owosso City Council actually think it is a good idea to allow a grain elevator to be established within the city limits? This operation will be in close proximity to residential neighborhoods and Oliver Woods.
Have the Council members any concept of the problems grain elevators bring with them? For one – grain dust causing pollution and serious respiratory health problems including cancer. One woman living close to such an elevator states that her neighborhood is now referred to as “cancer alley.” Another neighbor who lives a block south of the elevator, said his yard is often red and the dust can be two to three inches deep.  Lovely. He further states the dust is so bad that he has to get a new air filter in his vehicle every time he has it serviced. He states the noise from grain dryers, railroad car lids and other equipment makes being outside his home difficult. Apparently, the elevator does not operate only during the day. There is traffic noise and trains blocking roads for extended periods of time. Of course, there is also the danger of fires and explosions from grain dust accumulation.
All these problems plus the anticipated major cost to the city of strengthening existing streets and perhaps creating new ones to handle the anticipated traffic carrying heavy loads, make this venture a questionable one for the city.
Oliver Woods obviously has a major investment in their facility which is adjacent to this location. It is the peaceful and safe residence to many vulnerable older adults and employs a considerable staff. We cannot believe that the noise and pollution will be an enhancement to this facility.
The city is willing to accept all these established problems for a business that may generate possibly seven low-paying jobs and dangerous ones at that. Apparently, the dangers of working at grain elevator include suffocation from engulfment and entrapment in grain bins, falls from heights and crushing injuries and amputations from grain handling equipment.
Seriously? Has anyone on the council considered the welfare of their constituents? Remember those people they were elected to represent and look out for? Also the city could sell an unused piece of real estate. It’s not always about money, people.
Please urge the council to reconsider this decision which will impact not just the residents’ property values but their quality of life.

Rebecca C. McClear
Jean Koski

Rebecca C. McClear, Jean Koski was last modified: April 11th, 2016 by Karen Elford