Stacy Shaw | February 19, 2013
Should Madera Farm’s Special Use Permit be approved on Mar. 20, Madera Farm will produce mulch and wood chips on property along Farmview Road in Nokesville. Last week, an online petition initiated by Melinda Masters, and signed by 62 people to date made the task of getting Madera Farm’s Special Use Permit approved by the Board of County Supervisors more difficult. Owner/operator Jake Klitenic disputes many of the allegations mentioned on the petition, especially the description of his business as a “stump dump.”
“Landscaping is what I do. We are constantly trying to find a new use for organic materials of all types. We now do bedding for livestock with wood chips or playground bedding for kids, composts, rain garden and bioretention mixes,” Klitenic said. As a landscaping business, Klitenic sees his operation as agricultural. However, according to Prince William County his business falls under no specific zoning category. “It’s an SUP regardless of agricultural or industrial in Prince William County. It’s neither A1 or N1,” said Klitenic. However, in many regions, the production of mulch is considered agricultural, and Klitenic believes this is appropriate.
“I believe (in regards to) mulch and soil that it’s more of an agricultural and forestry related product than an industrial product,” Klitenic said. He thinks people might not agree, seeing the heavy trucks and farm equipment his business would require. However, Klitenic said those are an essential component of modern agriculture. “Times have changed and agricultural and forestry produce has changed too. Wood produce used to be wasted, buried and burned. Now we have found better uses for these types of organic materials. Zoning laws and attitudes have not kept pace with the times,” Klitenic said. In order to repurpose organic materials, machinery must be employed. However the tub grinder Madera uses is a machinery made for agricultural purposes. Additionally, the machinery will be hidden from public view, since the farm will be surrounded by acres of trees and shrubs.
“I really want Madera Farm to be a working farm, first and foremost. I want to have chickens, pigs, cows and grow my own food. I also want to be able to operate part of my landscaping business as well,” Klitenic said.
For the entire article click here