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Specialty Granules seeks permission to mine on Gum Tree Road

(3/23) Specialty Granules, Inc. (SGI) submitted a Zoning Ordinance Amendment Request to Hamiltonban Township asking for an amendment to the Hamiltonban Township Zoning Ordinance Map for their Charmin Plant. SGI is requesting that a 112 acres located on Gum Spring Road be rezoned from Woodland Conservation to Industrial.

The company was involved last year in the exchange of land with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. The company obtained a 110-acre portion of the former Glatfelter Tree Farm No. 1 (approx. 2,600-acres) which is now part of Michaux State Forest. The Glatfelter Tree Farm No. was preserved, in part, with funding from The Adams County Water and Land Bond Referendum. The purpose of the bond referendum is to protect clean water and Adams County's quality of life for future generations.

In exchange for the 110 acres at the southern tip of the Glatfelter tract, Specialty Granules Inc. gave the state three properties totaling 112 acres, which lie inside lands preserved for their environmental significance.

Rezoning will allow SGI to submit an application for a surface mining permit and extend their mining operations. At the Charmian Plant, surface rock is blasted and processed to extract the minerals beneath for shingle roofing granules. SGI employs approximately 175 people when operations are at full capacity.

A public hearing was held on February 27 at the Fairfield High School on the proposed zoning map amendment. On April 2 (7:00PM), Hamiltonban Township will consider approving the amendment. All Township meetings are held at the Township Office at 23 Carrolls Tract Road, Fairfield, PA, 17320. Meetings are open to the public. Comments about the application can be sent to the Township Office.

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