Proposed Top Soil Site in Plains Township Could Damage Nearby Farm

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PLAINS TOWNSHIP -- A farmer in Luzerne County fears almost half of the land he uses to plant could be destroyed by a proposed excavation site next door.

Stell Enterprises bought property next to the Larry O’Malia farm last year and now wants to use it to excavate top soil for landscaping. If that happens, owner Larry O'Malia believes it will make his farm much more prone to flooding from the nearby Susquehanna River, and possibly destroy almost half his land.

“You do this for so long and you put your heart and soul into it, you don't want your destiny to be determined by someone else,” he said, adding there's supposed to be a 500-foot buffer between his farm and any excavating project, but that Stell Enterprises wants that reduced to just 25 feet.

“I would prefer the land to stay just the way it is,” he said.

O'Malia sells his produce all over the Wyoming Valley.

Customers say losing another local farm would be a shame.

Stell Enterprises did not return Newswatch 16's calls for comment. But now, O'Malia hopes people will come to support him at an upcoming hearing on the possible use of the site. That is scheduled for February 29 at 7 p.m. at the Plains Township fire house on 2nd Street in Plains Township.


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