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Family fighting to keep farmland from being taken through eminent domain

By JOLEEN FERRIS

MARCY, N.Y. (WKTV) - Margaret Farmer, of Marcy, is spending her golden years battling her government for farmland that's been in her family for 100 years.

"It's heartbreaking, it's terrible," said Farmer. "I mean, I can't see how anyone could do such a thing to people."

Mohawk Valley Edge is prepared to invoke the powers of eminent domain to essentially force a sale of 55 acres of Farmer's land on Hazard Road, in Marcy; land they say is essential to making the site to which they're trying to lure a nano tech center/chip fab plant more marketable.

"It would make it a lot stronger site," says Steven DiMeo, of the Edge.

Farmer and her daughter, Karen, pleaded their case before the Edge and Oneida County Industrial Development Agency at a public hearing on Thursday at SUNYIT in Marcy. Karen Farmer says a factory would make the place where she grew up unrecognizable.

"A factory, you would have lights, you would have noise, you would have traffic," Farmer said. "Everything would change on it, you would lose the rural aspect of it. At night, now, you can see stars."

DiMeo points out that the agencies are not seeking to own Farmer's actual home, which is located across the street from the property on Hazard Road, which they are trying to acquire.

"We've offered to pay fair market value, actually more than fair market value...these are never easy things, but we'd like to make it as friendly as possible."

The public comment period continues and no decision has been made yet.

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