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Mills River OKs more stump grinding

MILLS RIVER — The Mills River Town Board has authorized a stump-grinding business on N.C. 280 at Old N.C. 191 to expand.

The board's decision to approve a special use permit gives Riverside Stump Dump the green light to seek a state environmental permit to increase the volume of material it grinds.
Riverside Stump Dump takes in yard waste, trees and stumps and grinds it into mulch, which it sells for use in residential developments and as fuel to suppliers in East Tennessee and North Georgia, Patrick Bradshaw, a civil engineer who represented Riverside, told the Town Council.
Bradshaw said the business plans no additional grinders or longer hours in connection with a state Department of Environment and Natural Resources classification change from a yard waste facility to a treatment and processing facility.
"Within the confines of the appropriate permit, they would like to sell more hamburgers out of the same size building," Bradshaw told the council. "They can't take additional types of materials, doesn't allow any greater hours or time of day. Once you become a commercial operation you really need to be moving toward a treatment and process permit. It's just based on the volume of material."
The treatment and processing permit will enable the business to operate on two acres and store more than 6,000 cubic feet of material each quarter. Because the permit allows Riverside to store a greater volume of waste, the state will require greater setbacks from a stream and property line.
"The operation is pretty straightforward," Bradshaw said. "They take in material from any number of people, grind them into a mulch product for residential use and boiler fuel ... They can't take dirty waste or any solid waste."
The 6.8-acre parcel is owned by Hendersonville attorneys Larry Hogan and Bill Gardo and leased to Riverside and to a cellular tower company.
Hogan told the council that when the partners bought the property, they cleared a dilapidated trailer park and paid for a quarter of the cost of a sewer line extension. The sewer line ended up allowing Ingles to build its superstore on property next door.
"I think we've been good citizens," he said.