Plastics recycling project's OK delayed

By The Associated Press

RICHMOND — Zoning officials in eastern Indiana have postponed a decision on a plastic recycling company's planned expansion to investigate complaints that the company is a magnet for gnats, rats and other pests.

DAK Americas is seeking zoning variances to expand its Richmond business, which takes used plastic containers and cuts them into flakes that can be turned back into plastic bottles.

But the Richmond Board of Zoning Appeals put the company’s requests for zoning variances to accommodate that expansion on hold last week after adjacent business owners urged the board not to approve them.

Joe Creech, whose business is located south of DAK Americas, said that when plastic food container are stacked outside that business they “draw unbelievable infestations of gnats, flies, rats" and other pests.

"We've employed the bug strips, we've bought bug lights, we have pest control come on a regular basis, and we can't win,” Creech said.

Richmond's city planning staff said that all 10 adjacent property owners they contacted about the company''s zoning variance requests said they oppose DAK Americas’ proposed expansion in the city about 60 miles (96 kilometers) east of Indianapolis.

The zoning board has delayed its reconsideration of the variance requests until its April meeting to give officials time to determine how DAK Americas will address the neighbors’ concerns.

DAK Americas is planning to install a 10-foot (3.05-meter) high, fabric-covered fence on top of a knoll surrounding its outdoor storage area, the Palladium-Item reported.

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