Barnsley Resort President David Friederich pledged Thursday night to fill up a Bartow County Planning Commission meeting Aug. 3 with people opposed to the rezoning of more than 400 acres off Rock Fence Road.
The land is located near the resort and a company intends to use it for mining purposes. Friederich said Barnsley was against the rezoning and potential for a mining operation at every stage of the process.
The Bartow Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on the rezoning for Yellowstone LLC on four land lots off Rock Fence Road, from agricultural use to mining use, August 3 at 6 p.m. in the Courtroom D of the Bartow County Courthouse, 135 West Cherokee Avenue.
“What we will do is just keep calling and bothering everybody who is an elected official, making sure that they know,” Friederich said. “I plan on bringing 50 or 60 or 70 people from Barnsley Resort down on Aug. 3. We’re all going to sign up to speak. I want them to be aware of how many people are seriously against this and I’m going to keep them there as long as we can until they understand how passionate we are against this.”
State Representative Mitchell Scoggins reminded a crowd of well over 100 on the Public Square in Adairsville Thursday evening that Yellowstone LLC, the company seeking the rezoning, was entitled to a fair hearing before any decisions are made.
“Y’all please don’t give up. I hope that it doesn’t happen,” Scoggins said
Brandon Bowen, who represents the City of Adairsville on zoning matters, told a large crowd on the Adairsville Public Square the city has done some environmental analysis to support the negative impact a mining operation could have on the water supply.
The city’s official response to the Development of Regional Impact application for the project states that the area of the proposed rezoning is known to be prone to sinkholes.
A geologic survey of the area claims there is a likelihood of well and spring pollution resulting from contaminants entering sinkholes. The city’s engineering consultant, Brian A. Rindt, reported that the city’s water supply at Lewis Spring is interconnected to the underlying aquifer below the mining site.
“Your city council is firmly in opposition to this mine,” Bowen said.
“We cannot be lulled into complacency with the false hope that this will not effect us,” said Sharon Viktora. “If approved, this applicant will have been handed a key to unlock a Pandora’s box of problems for community. We will not stand by and watch one person’s American dream of profits, become a nightmare for thousands of others.”
Viktora, a pharmacist who started the grassroots campaign against the mining project, also told the audience that Yellowstone operates a landfill. The rezoning could also pave the way for development of the property on Rock Fence Road for a landfill, she said.
The official city response to the project states that Adairsville leaders are even more concerned about what type of contaminants could be introduced into the water supply through a landfill operation which would be permitted in the mining zoning classification.
Yellowstone has not indicated what kind of specific use they plan for the property.
The Bartow Planning Commission will hear the rezoning request during as public hearing August 3 and make a recommendation. Then Commissioner Steve Taylor will hear the issue during his meeting August 5 at 10 a.m., in the Bartow County Courthouse.