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Belfast Residents File Suit Against City Over Salmon Farm Zoning Process

PLANNING BOARD HEARING AUG. 15

BELFAST — Citing improper municipal process and failure to follow citizen participation procedures, two Belfast residents filed a complaint against the city, and cite the Belfast Water District and Nordic Aquafarms, Inc., a privately owned Norwegian-based business, as parties in interest. Nordic Aquafarms wants to site a land-based indoor salmon farm on 40 acres that currently belongs to the water district and private landowner Sam Cassida.

Ellie Daniels and Donna Broderick live on property abutting the 40-acre parcel in question, which is currently wooded and is adjacent to the Little River that flows into Penobscot Bay. 

They said, in a prepared statement on Aug. 8, that the city, “abused its powers by approving April 17 zoning and comprehensive plan amendments without following state statute and local zoning ordinance process for planning board and community involvement.” 

Through their attorney, Bruce McGlauflin, who is with the Portland-based firm Petruccelli, Martin & Haddow, the two filed an amended complaint Aug. 7 in Waldo County Superior Court. The City of Belfast has yet to reply to the complaint because it had been amended. Portland-based law firm Eaton Peabody represents the Water District; Drummond Woodsum represents Nordic Aquafarm, Inc.; and William Kelly, attorney with Kelly and Associates, in Belfast, represents the city.

Daniels and Broderick plan to be at the Troy Howard Middle School, in Belfast, at 5:30 p.m., one half hour preceding the 6 p.m. Aug. 15 Planning Board public hearing, to explain their position. 

The hearing is being held by the Belfast Planning Board to consider the amendments that had been approved by the Council on April 17.

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