IDA Approves Negative Declaration on Environmental Review of Great Lakes Cheese Proposal

BELMONT — The Allegany County Industrial Development Agency will consider financial incentives for a proposed $505 million Great Lakes Cheese development on Thursday as the project continues to clear hurdles — though the biggest one remains ahead. 

During a special meeting Tuesday, the IDA approved a negative declaration on the environmental review of the proposal, which found the manufacturing project would not have a negative effect on the environment. The IDA acted as the lead agency under the State Environmental Quality Review Act. 

The IDA also took another step toward utilizing eminent domain to acquire the land for the project, approving a resolution of determination and associated findings to secure acreage in the towns of Amity and Angelica to make way for the development. IDA board chairman Rich Ewell said the IDA takes the use of eminent domain “very seriously.” 

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