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Planning board approves Benton facility   ADVERTISEMENT

Planning board approves Benton facility

YATES COUNTY—The Yates County planning board approved a special use permit application by Hometowne Energy for an energy bulk plant facility during their meeting Thursday, June 27. The site will be utilized for petroleum, diesel fuel and propane storage. The location is at 1633 Route 14A across from the Hayes Auction Barn. The permit application was brought before the Benton zoning board of appeals Tuesday, July 2 (This meeting report is available by clicking here).
Hometowne Energy President John Campbell said the company has been building a customer base in Benton and the location for the proposed 39 acre site has not been used in many years. He said his company plans on having “roughly three fuel tanks” at the site to store a total of 60,000 gallons of petroleum, diesel fuel and  propane. He said they only have a set size for one of the tanks so far, which will be a 30,000 gallon propane tank. Campbell said the company wanted to make sure the project would be approved before investing their money.
“We know how to do it right and know what needs to be done,” Campbell said. “We just need approval first.”
Campbell said Hometowne Energy encountered a problem when the Geneva pipeline was shut down, and in order to service this area, the company needs the storage. Campbell said they plan on being a “good neighbor” and plan on providing landscaping to enhance the site. He said they needed approval of the permit now in order to have the storage in place for the fall.
“If we don’t put this project in now, it’s done,” Campbell said. “We will need to go somewhere friendlier. We need this built and ready for fall harvest, and we have to move.”
Some residents spoke against the facility, saying having the loading facility and trucks coming in and out of the property would set a bad image for tourists coming into the area. They said the unattractive facility would be in view of at least 10 different residences and may decrease their property values.
County Planner Shawna Bonshak said the site would have significant screening, while Campbell said they would do enough work so that if a person drives by it, they will hardly be able to see it. Board member Jim Ritter said it would not be a good idea to locate the site on a side road, being many town and county roads would not be able to handle the weight of the heavy trucks, where the state roads of Route 14A could. The board voted to approve the special use permit to allow Hometowne Energy to begin their work on the project.
In other business:
• The board approved a special use permit for Adam Sauder at 2444 Havens Corners Road for the relocation of an existing store.
• The board denied a site plan review for Randy Baker for a commercial business at 204 Lake St. due to an incomplete application.
• David Healey was granted permission to divide the building at 209 Lake St. into four separate retail spaces. The vote passed with two votes against. Chairman Ronald Rubin said he would have liked to see more information about parking on the site and what retail stores will be moved into the building.
• Kenneth and Pauline Weaver were granted a special use permit for putting a retail business into an existing building in the town of Benton.
Cutline: Hometowne Energy President John Campbell said they need approval from the board soon before beginning work on a gas and petroleum storage facility at 1633 Route 14A during the Yates County planning board meeting Thursday, June 27.






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