Letter: Cumberland needs excavation limits

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I want to thank The Forecaster and Alex Lear for getting the word out to Cumberland citizens about our town government issues. As reported in the April 28 edition, a public hearing was held about the upcoming amendments to the Cumberland Zoning Ordinance to eliminate the excavation of land as a permitted use in Rural Residential 1 and 2 zones. Randy Copp presented his points as to why this activity should be allowed and contends that “80 percent of the residents could not be affected by a gravel pit.” Citizens need to know that these zones make up 80 percent of our town and if you live here you are affected.

This ordinance is not just about gravel pits, the excavation of land as defined by the ordinance includes “top soil, rock, sand, gravel and similar earth materials” including clay and sod. So while our town may only be 10 percent sand and gravel your neighborhoods are rich in all of the other minerals and ground cover that are included in this ordinance for extraction. This is not just about one citizen’s property rights but the potential loss of residential property rights of 80 percent of the citizens should an industrial activity want to open up next door. Secure the future of your residential neighborhood, your property values, quality of life and mother nature’s resources and vote yes on June 14 to remove this industrial activity from our residential zoning ordinance.

Theresa Maloney-Kelly