Leslie Cooper, who lives close to the Marietta Recycling property, was among dozens of neighbors to find a flier taped to the mailbox Friday, warning about the proposed scrap metal processing and transfer station.
"I'm concerned," Cooper said.
Neighbors and community organizations such as Canton Road Neighbors worry about the noise and traffic and about a transfer station operating next door to a youth sports complex.
"We're not doing anything different that we haven't been doing for a year," Marietta Recycling owner and manager Steve Stewart told Northeast Cobb Patch. "We've gotten no complaints until someone saw a pile of scrap metal and complained."
Stewart said the site is a back piece of property used primarily for storage. It's an overflow yard for the main metal recycling facility at 311 Marble Mill Road NW.
Metal is a commodity. Its value fluctuates. Metal is often stored at scrap yards before being shipped out by rail.
According to Canton Road Neighbors, after citizens reported that Marietta Recycling was using the property to shred metal—a process that requires a special land use permit—Cobb County code enforcement issued a citation. The company must file an application for that permit, and the county Planning Commission and Board of Commissioners will hear and vote on the application, similar to a rezoning case.
The Canton Road Neighbors web site states that a check with the Cobb Business License Division found no record of Marietta Recycling having a license to operate in unincorporated Cobb, although it is licensed in Marietta.
Stewart told Northeast Cobb Patch that the business license to operate in unincorporated Cobb is under MRC Transportation (Marietta Recycling's trucking company). Marietta Recycling pays MRC Transportation for the trucking, storage and processing of material on that property.
"When we applied for the business license, we spelled out the exact use of the property on the business license," he said.
The fact that Marietta Recycling has continued metal shredding operations and has built a facility in advance of its May hearing dates before the Planning Commission and Board of Commissioners doesn't sit well with Canton Road Neighbors.
"The question is: who on the Board of Commissioners has told his attorney, Garvis Sams, it is OK for his client to proceed in advance of the hearing?" Canton Road Neighbors President Carol Brown wrote on the group's website.
Canton Road Neighbors said it will ask the Planning Commission to recommend denying Marietta Recycling's application.
"We are not buying scrap metal from the public at this location," Stewart said. "There is no shredder. This property is used to park our trucks and store metal."
Aluminum is stored at the site. There is a welding facility to torch-cut pieces of steel, if needed.
"We are a family-run business. We care about the community. On my days off, I'll open the yard for the Cobb County fire or police to practice cutting up cars. That training saves lives," Stewart said.
The Planning Commission will hear the application May 3. The Board of Commissioners is scheduled to vote on it May 5. (The Canton Road Neighbors web site has the wrong date. The April hearings have been rescheduled for May).
Stewart invites the public to contact him with questions and concerns at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To comment about the application, you can e-mail District 3 Planning Commissioner Christi Trombetti at Christi.Trombetti@cobbcounty.org and District 3 Commissioner JoAnn Birrell at JoAnn.Birrell@cobbcounty.org.
How do you feel about Marietta Recycling operating a scrap metal processing and transfer station on Canton Highway? Tell us in the Comment Box below.