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Questions on the red meat plant

January 26, 2012

As an area resident who firmly believes “ag is the answer” to many of the socioeconomic woes in Sullivan County (all of New York State, for that matter), hydrofracking being fraught with serious risk, the casino market nearing super-saturation, and the ills begotten by gambling another issue altogether, I was glad to read the Village of Liberty Planning Board had given a final nod to the site plan for the red meat processing plant. A few questions, however, remain for the Sullivan County Industrial Development Agency to answer.

Why, after so many years of laying the groundwork for the plant, has its design yet to be finalized? Secondly—no offense whatsoever to the “local engineer”—since such work has yet to be done, will ag engineering and ag economics experts from Cornell University be overseeing this crucial phase of the project? If not, why not?

Finally, a few years down the road, will the slaughter plant capacity—as thus far planned—meet the growing needs of our livestock producers, or will it be inadequate? Would the Liberty site allow for expansion, should the need arise?

Although I’m thinking incorporating extra capacity into the original project would be wise, I’d hope the Sullivan County Legislature will insist on hearing what Cornell University experts recommend.

Susan Kross
Dairyland, NY