Compared to Paper Mills
I have worked at the Manzer asphalt facility in Bethel for the past couple of construction seasons. It is a good job, and I appreciate the work.
I was amazed at the last two Planning Board meetings that people were somehow comparing the asphalt facility to a paper mill. I don’t understand how this has gotten so blown out of proportion. Where I work has nothing in common with a paper mill.
First of all, unlike an enormous paper mill, you couldn’t, or won’t, actually see the machine. It has a small, single stack which can be completely screened by trees and natural landscape. It is not much taller than the water slides at Big Adventure just down the street, and much less visible. I don’t think that anyone ever saw the machine when it was in Richard and Grace Douglass’s yard, and they certainly won’t see it across the street.
Secondly, a paper mill runs 24 hours a day, and 365 days a year. In comparison the road construction season is roughly April to November and we had limited hours of operation. We were only approved to operate from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday thru Friday and 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday; closed on Sunday. In reality though, we were open just two Saturdays all of last season. I would have gladly put in more hours if I could have, but there wasn’t enough work.
Finally, paper mills are in the middle of town because the towns grew up around them. The back of the old Labrecque pit where we hope to move is over two miles away from Bethel Village. The nearest houses on the North Road are over 1,500 feet away.
I hope that this helps to calm any fears about the size of this operation.