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CASTLE HAYNE, NC (WWAY)– Not one, but two plants cleared big hurdles Wednesday and are now a step closer to calling Castle Hayne home.

Both a uranium enrichment plant and cement plant could possible be setting up shop in New Hanover County.

The people of Castle Hayne say they have been torn by this issue for quite some time and with these plants getting ever closer the debate rages on.

“One, the last plant didn’t hurt nobody,” said Castle Hayne resident David Riggs. “Two, the Castle Hayne area could sure use the jobs.”

“That number of jobs is minuscule (compared) to the damage that’s about to be done if this all happens,” said Charles Robbins of Stop-Titan.

The North Carolina Division of Air Quality approved an air quality permit Wednesday for Carolinas Cement Company, bringing Titan closer to the county.

“We had hoped that the state would heed the citizens request to look at this in a comprehensive way and they chose not to do that but to issue this peace meal permit,” said Stop-Titan member Tracy Skrabal.

Stop-Titan members continue to be very vocal about the plants not coming because of their impact on air and water quality.

Those who are for the plants say they have not hurt the area in the past, and the economic growth that could come with the new plants would make it all worth while.

“I think that we’re sophisticated enough that any air quality problems, I think they’re going to address,” said Castle Hayne resident Mitch Wallace. “Anything that’s going to bring some growth and jobs to the area, I’m all for.”

It’s not all about Titan though. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission said recently that a plan to build a uranium enrichment plant in Castle Hayne is safe.

They still have more regulatory approvals to go through, but Stop-Titan says that just doubles the trouble.

“That’s a little mind boggling. The impact would be almost unconscionable how that can effect so many people,” said Robbins.

As for Titan, it still has to go through a long local permit process, including trying to get a special use permit.

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