Press release below also attached in PDF
PO Box 12372 J
acksonville, North Carolina 28546
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2010
John Runkle (919) 942-0600
Carolyn Humphrey (910) 389-3914
Louis Zeller (336) 982-2691
Rhonda Littleton (910) 358-0817
GROUP FILES LEGAL CHALLENGE TO MORTON ASPHALT PLANT
Today Protect Onslow County Neighborhoods announced their filing of a legal challenge to the Board of Adjustment’s special use permit for the proposed Morton asphalt plant near Jacksonville. The April 12th lawsuit states that PON members presented expert testimony that the proposed plant would harm the community.
In the legal complaint, Attorney John Runkle wrote, “The proposed plant will constitute a nuisance to the members of the PON Foundation and other members of the public, and otherwise interfere with the use and enjoyment of their property.” The complaint further states that no credible evidence was submitted by Morton associates showing that the proposed asphalt plant would be in harmony with the Kellum neighborhood. Also, some members of the public were not allowed to speak.
PON leaders are concerned about public health protection, air quality, water quality and other potential impacts from the proposed Morton asphalt plant. Carolyn Humphrey, PON Foundation Chairman, said, “We are a non-profit community action group dedicated to protecting and preserving our quality of life.”
At the February 23rd public hearing, Louis Zeller, Science Director for the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League, told the Board of Adjustment that the proposed asphalt plant would endanger human health. Zeller said, “Our analysis demonstrates that toxic pollutants would be deposited as much as six miles from the proposed plant site.” He continued, “Arsenic, benzene and formaldehyde are very harmful to children, the elderly, the infirm and those who work and play outdoors.”
PON member Rhonda Littleton said, “I have 2 children, one less than a year old. I am concerned about the health risk of living near an asphalt plant. What will my ten-month-old daughter’s quality of life be? There are too many unanswered questions.”
The legal challenge is part of a multi-faceted community campaign to block the Morton asphalt plant. The PON Foundation is a chapter of the statewide Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League. Organized in 1984, the League has worked for nearly two decades in coastal North Carolina counties. All donations to PON Foundation are tax deductible.