Concerned about their health, property values, the health of their community and quality of life, several concerned Macon County property and business owners met last week to discuss ways and means of finding out more about Cobb Vantress’ proposed poultry operations in Macon County. The third time they’d come together, some in the group knew each other; some where new; all were bearing information that fueled their questions and concerns.
The concerns didn’t come from out of the blue, but from widely publicized research and some personal experience.
The first and most obvious concern of the group is at least one on-going lawsuit that Cobb, owned by Tyson Foods, is involved in, filed in 2005 by the Attorney General of Oklahoma Drew Edmonson against 14 poultry operations for water and soil pollution.
“They’re wanting to move very quickly,” Mayor J.Y. Carter told members of the Lafayette City Council at their regular meeting on Tuesday, August 5 as he introduced Cobb-Vantres’ proposal to buy 9.55 acres of Industrial Park property. “James Young was here last Wednesday, and they’re wanting to get our lawyers together as soon as possible.”
Read more: Cobb-Vantres to Buy 9.55 Industrial Park Acres
When all votes were in and counted, the closest race of the August 7 election turned out to be one for a seat on the school board, representing Districts 1, 2, 11, and 20. Ronald Birdwell won that seat by just four votes; with his opponent Mark Sircy receiving 194, Birdwell getting 198. Birdwell fills the seat vacated by Diana Carter. Incumbent Stephen Walton kept his seat, representing Districts 13, 14, 17, and 18, with a 175 vote lead over Quinn Marlow. Walton got 353 votes for his position. John Wheeley was chosen to fill the seat vacated by Mike Marshall, with 306 votes as opposed to Chuck Sandifer’s 201.
Read more: County Votes Are In: 3,084 Voters Choose Officials