Digester gets needed permit on 3-0 vote of town board

Posted at 3:45 p.m. on September 26, 2019

Digester gets ‘yes’ with many conditions

The Brillion News

GREENLEAF – B.C. Organics (BCO) got the permit it wanted and needed to build and operate a $60 million manure digester in the Town of Wrightstown, southwest of Greenleaf.

On a 3-0 vote on Wednesday, September 25, the Wrightstown Town Board approved the conditional use permit (CUP) that BCO applied for after a similar request was voted down by the Holland Town Board 2-1 last spring.

The Town of Holland process took a year, but the Town of Wrightstown moved through the process more swiftly – in part because much of the research developed by the Town of Holland was used by the Town of Wrightstown Planning Commission in its study of the project.

The conditions imposed by the Town of Wrightstown as a part of the granting of the CUP include:

Of the manure being processed at the plant, between 55 and 70 percent will by pumped through pipelines running between two large nearby farms – the Wiese Brothers Farm and Country Air Farms – and the digester plant.

The plant will be built on the north side of Mill Road, about halfway between Old 57 Road and Elmro Road, on land owned by the Wiese Brothers Farm.

Anaerobic digestion will be used to process the liquid manure slurry, separating out methane gas and nutrients. The gas will go into a nearby natural gas pipeline.

The manure going to the plant from other farms will be trucked, with the routes of all trucks laid out in a trucking plan.

BCO will upgrade the town roads used for the heavy traffic of the manure trucks prior to the opening of the plant.

Town officials will be able to access the plant with 24 hours notice to make inspections.

Before BCO drills any high-capacity water well, a cone of influence study will be done to make sure the well would not damage the supply of water for existing wells in the area.

Because the plant is tax exempt, BCO will pay the town money in lieu of property taxes each year, equal to the amount of the property tax. BCO will also cover the towns expenses, up to $40,000, for its costs associated with the digester in the town’s action of the CUP. BCO will pay the town up to $24,000 each year to cover the town’s costs in administering the CUP.

The complete document is available on the town’s website, https://townofwrightstown.org/

Note: a more complete story on the Town Board’s final approval of the CUP will be featured in the October 3 print edition of THE BRILLION NEWS.

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