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Millville Plastics Plan Divides Commission

by Mickey Brandt

A plan for bringing a major plastics recycling firm to the city on the 18-acre site of the former Wheaton Glass factory along Wheaton Avenue and G Street is itself facing some recycling. The Millville Plastics development group first proposed elements of the project several years ago but has had to find its way through a tangle of legal delays, a change of city administration, and some current opposition.

At the regular Commission meeting on October 15, the project’s principal investor, Green EnviroTech Holdings Corp. of Jamestown, CA, publicly announced that Millville was chosen over several locations in New Jersey and that when fully completed in about 18 months the $150 million project will employ about 300 workers.

Millville Plastics attorney Lou Magazzu and development partner Anthony DeSantis made impassioned pleas at the meeting in a follow-up presentation they had repeatedly requested to give.

“If we don’t get the green light soon from the city, this project will collapse,” Magazzu said.

In registering her reservations, Commissioner Ashleigh Udalovas stated the developers have “circumvented the [planning] department—we have not seen yet to date a developer who has so aggressively pursued this and with an air of what I would say would resemble intimidation.”

Several commissioners spoke in favor of the project.

”We need jobs in our city and that number would make a big difference; we need to take a hard look at this and not throw it away,” said Commissioner Bruce Cooper.

In other business, the commission, in a 3-2 vote, tabled resolutions to both lease land to Synnergy, LLC for a solar power installation and award a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement to the firm.

In another resolution, commissioners stated their intention to approve a $771,250 bond issue to fund the public library expansion, contingent upon the library obtaining a matching grant from the NJ Library Contraction Bond Act.