Like many other growing parts of Delaware County, Genoa Township leaders are dealing with increasingly complex issues.
Among them is how to address the potential location of medical marijuana facilities in the township. Genoa Township trustees recently held a public hearing about medical marijuana production.
“Communities are being faced with the decision of how they’re going to allow processing, distribution and growing of marijuana,” township spokesperson Leslie Strader said. “I was told it was a very emotional meeting, because you have people on both sides of the issue — either they have a condition where this is important medicine for them, and then you have people who came to the meeting who have lost a loved one due to drugs. It was very informative.”
Strader noted that the issue is still being discussed.
“No decision was reached, the trustees just wanted to better understand the community’s feelings,” Strader said. “It’ll definitely be discussed again. There might even be another special meeting on it.”
Opinions regarding medical marijuana can be emailed to the trustees at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Property development continues to be a concern. In one case, 43 acres of property west of Hoover Reservoir owned by Benton and Katherine Benalcazar is planning to be developed into a farm with 2,500 swine; 1,000 head of cattle; and 1.25 million pullets (female chickens). In a letter, the Benalcazars said they have tried for 12 years to get Genoa’s trustees to agree to a residential development, but were hung up on the matter of housing density.
Another proposed development, Vinmar’s phases 4 through 6 on 75 acres between State Route 3 and Lewis Center Road, is of concern to some residents because the trustees could change the zoning from Rural Residential (RR) to Planned Residential Development (PRD) to allow for greater housing density.
Finally, “Cardinal Self-Storage filed two lawsuits against Genoa for denying a request to exceed the 65,000 square foot limitation for building sizes,” trustee Frank Dantonio wrote in the township newsletter. “Genoa lost the first lawsuit in Delaware County Court of Common Pleas and has appealed the decision. The second lawsuit is pending in the United States Southern District Court and will not be decided until sometime in 2018.”
Strader said the zoning commission examines each request on a case-by-case basis. The newsletter notes, “the Zoning Commission is currently Revising Genoa’s Zoning Resolution to comply with Genoa’s 2016 Comprehensive (Land Use) Plan previously enacted December, 2016.”
Land use is an issue for political candidates as well. There are six vying for two Genoa Trustee positions to serve terms from Jan. 1, 2018 to Dec. 31, 2021. One of the candidates, Kevin Gainer, has said his main priority would be preservation.
Township officials confirmed that they have agreed with Rumpke on a renewal of the waste removal contract as part of a consortium. Previous media reports disseminated erroneous information regarding the issue.
“There was a lot of confusion — people thought they weren’t going to get their yard waste picked up at the curb anymore,” Strader said. “That’s not the case. The service is staying the same. Their yard waste is getting picked up, it’s just going to a landfill rather than a composting facility.”
The next trustees meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 21.
Contact Gary Budzak at 740-413-0906. Follow him on Twitter @GaryBudzak.