Neighbors say ‘no chickens’ in Straban Twp., Adams County

People in Straban Township, Adams County are upset about a proposed factory farm that would put 60,000 chickens next door to their homes.

The plans would put the egg-laying farm on a 54-acre property on Stone Jug Road, two barns, each holding 30,000 chickens. Signs have gone up at every house near it in protest.

“Everybody was alarmed and nobody was in favor of it, so it didn’t take long to get people kind of upset,” says Dr. Robert Mauss, a neighbor.

There are horse farms nearby but neighbors say with a large chicken farm, they’re worried about the flies, the smell and the environment. It’s an area that borders gamelands and wetlands.

At the Gettysburg Eagles Club, the neighbors gathered for a meeting. The group is called the Concerned Citizens of Stone Jug.

“We’re all for farms,” says Linda Adelsberger, who lives nearby. “There’s horse farms around us, and people that farm their fields, I have nothing against farmers.”

But the area is zoned rural-residential, and some say this farm is too big and commercial.
The zoning application is submitted by Ernest Burkholder, who could not be reached for comment. If Burkholder can meet the criteria for a special exception, the zoning board will have to grant the request.

The public zoning hearing will be held Tuesday, Sept. 9th at 7 p.m. at the Straban Township Municipal Building.