More than one confidential source is whispering that having been denied necessary permits by the Ghent Planning Board, Ginsberg’s Foods is searching for a new location in Columbia County—and has been focusing on the Town of Greenport.
The company still might go through the motions of a court challenge to the recent Ghent Planning Board denial on the off-chance they still can’t find another location in another 12-18 months.
That’s the likely timeframe for obtaining a judicical ruling. But such a process is lengthly, costly, and by no means guaranteed to provide the company’s preferred outcome. Courts tend to give deference to agency rulings, and at best a judge might send the matter back for further review at the Town level... Meaning another 6-8 months after that, before having a marginal chance of maybe getting a more favorable decision. Even so, such a “victory” would likely result in a much different facility by the time more mitigations and changes were made.
Given that uncertainty, such sources indicate that Ginsberg’s has shown interest in another Columbia County town with much less zoning: The Town of Greenport, which requires minimal site plan approvals, but notoriously has no actual zoning code.
The location reportedly being scoped by Ginsberg’s is somewhere in the Route 9 corridor between Flanders and Buckley’s Corners, just southeast of Hudson. This stretch includes the former Holcim/St. Lawrence Cement headquarters, currently home to the company’s toadies at the Columbia Economic Development Corporation; the former Local Ocean facility, which seems to have been acquired by a waste management/scrap recycling firm with no obvious connection to growing fish in vats; and several very large agricultural parcels which have been on the market for nearly a decade.
This is strictly at the rumor phase at the moment, but the reports come from well-placed by disparate sources.