MILLBURY, Mass. – The Millbury Planning Board decided Monday night to continue the public hearing for the proposed rock processing project at 130 Westborough St. until its Sept. 24 meeting. The public meeting lasted until just before 11 p.m. as the large conference room at Town Hall was full of angry residents who spoke against the project.
The owners of the project, Treeline Construction Co., are planning to put a rock crushing/processing operation in place in the future, however what the Planning Board heard Monday was strictly a proposal by the company on its parking plans, equipment changes and traffic concerns.
But these details did little to deter residents who’ve been fighting the project for years.
Richard Cravedi, his voice rising on many occasions, said the board had no jurisdiction in approving a rock processing operation, that the decision has to come from both the board of Health and the Department of Environmental Protection.
Both Chairperson Richard Gosselin and Town Planner Laurie Connors said the Planning Board was not giving – and cannot give – the OK for a processing operation. They said that, by law, the company can have its proposals heard on the other aspects of the project. Still, residents who also live in Grafton and Worcester, which abut the property, were not happy about the proposal taking place.
Kate Toomey from the Worcester City Council, who is also a nearby resident, spoke many times during the meeting, questioning health and environmental concerns – as did Dr. Michael Hirsh, surgeon-in-chief at the UMass Memorial Children’s Medical Center and acting commissioner of the Worcester Board of Health.
Things got heated between Board member Alan Linkevich and Worcester City Council member George Russell on more than one occasion. Russell is also a nearby resident of the 350 homes in Worcester that are within a quarter mile of the property.
Finally just before 11 p.m., Gosselin asked for a vote to close the public hearing and continue it until the Sept. 24 meeting to give board members a chance to "sleep on this and go over all the details."
The scheduled time for the project is slated for 7:30 p.m. in the large conference room.