Planning board denies permit for farmworker housing in Eustis

Residents spoke out against project

EUSTIS, Fla. – The Lake County Planning and Zoning Board has voted to deny a permit for a 46,000-square foot farmworker housing building near Eustis.

Dozens of residents spoke out against the plan during a meeting on Wednesday.

The project, proposed by the company Liner Source, calls for the complex to be built near the intersection of County Road 44A and Calhoun Road.

According to documents submitted by the company, the building would be able to house up to 196 workers at any given time. The plan called for it to be built on a 5 acre parcel, which sits on a 40 acre plant nursery.

"In my opinion, packing 200 people in one area does not keep the area rural," resident John Segars said at Wednesday's meeting.

During public comment, residents spoke about a number of concerns, ranging from increased crime to water pollution, traffic and noise.

"My main thing is our property values," Marta Cruz said. "There's just some things that can't be predicted."

Representatives from Liner Source said measures would be put in place to address each of the concerns, but the assurances weren't enough for the board.

The conditional use permit was denied by a vote of 3-1, which was met with cheers from the audience.

The Lake County Board of Commissioners will have a final say on the project during their meeting May 21.

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