Local News

Raleigh opposes Butner bio-lab

Posted August 5, 2008
Updated August 12, 2008

— The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to adopt a resolution formally opposing locating a federal research lab in Granville County.

Butner is one of five finalist locations that the Department of Homeland Security is considering for a National Bio- and Agro-Defense facility, which would study animal diseases and diseases spread from animals to humans.

Supporters say the lab would bring about 1,500 short-term construction jobs and would eventually employ up to 500 people and could generate $6 billion in the local economy over the next two decades.

Local residents have rallied in opposition to the proposed lab, fearing germs for diseases like avian flu could be released in the community or a possible terrorist attack.

Granville County officials also withdrew their support for the lab earlier this year.

The Raleigh City Council asked Homeland Security officials six months ago to answer questions they had about protecting the headwaters of Falls Lake, the city's primary reservoir, from any contamination from the lab.

City Manager Russell Allen said the federal officials haven't adequately answered the city's questions, so he recommended the council formally oppose the project.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • Dnut Aug 7, 2008

    If this is such a great thing, then why don't they (DHS), listen to the idea of building it on the Dorthea Dix site, when it's closed? Why did (DHS), promise Senator Clinton they would not expand nor build a new level 4 facility on Plum island? They've had many, many exposures but the surrounding water has kept it contained and they could easily just build a new one there. Butner is a sleepy little nice town, and those of us who live, work, kids in school, want it to stay that way! That land should be given to wildlife for the hunting land we've lost between the state and feds building everywhere, and private development. Oh, and yes the protestors that you see, do live here, have organized here, and you may think we don't know what we're doing, but we have been raising money to take this to court if necessary. So, if you don't like the way we have it here, move back North!

  • getrealpeople Aug 6, 2008

    "What does the city council of Raleigh, NC have to do with Butner, NC? They should mind their own business."

    Cause Butner's waste treatment and this lab will flow into Falls Lake. If you live in Wake county and care where your drinking water comes from, you don't want it downstream of a Biolab!!

  • rc4nc Aug 6, 2008

    Why can't we outsource it to Saudi Arabia?

  • benno Aug 5, 2008

    What does the city council of Raleigh, NC have to do with Butner, NC? They should mind their own business.

  • NCSULandscaper Aug 5, 2008

    Im only a few miles away from the site, bring it on, the area needs the income and jobs.

  • gnew46 Aug 5, 2008

    lol at vaulter and quigley. People should consider the facts, not emotions.

  • nobio Aug 5, 2008

    Have you read the May 22 and Oct 4,2007 GAO reports, Draft-EIS, Congressional quarterly reports on the NBAF that reports that So. Granville County will have to tolerate aerial spraying of insecticides over the Raleigh, Durham, Butner, Creedmoor and Stem watersheds, eradication of deer, the lack of Freedom of information by the DHS? Also, by the way NBAF will now study Avian Flu and Hoof and Mouth Disease. Please comment after you have read it all. By the way, the CDC in Atlanta has had 7 mishaps since last October and uses duct tape to preserve door seals. You are right, our opposition represents over 30 states. www,nobio.org

  • bs101fly Aug 5, 2008

    then let them CRYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!

  • Y-U-B-H8N Aug 5, 2008

    Most of you people need to get over yourselves...a terrorist attack in Butner, NC??? Are you kidding me? If there were to be another attack wouldn't the CDC be a slightly better target? Come on folks, grow up and educate yourselves. If Butner doesn't get the lab, they'll be crying about no jobs....

  • keeprightexcepttopass Aug 5, 2008

    I think Butner is the perfect place for it. I work in Butner, and if any of you have ever been up there, you'd see the whole place is Federal Prisons, juvie prisons, mental health hospitals, children's reform schools, mental retardation community, etc.... Might as well add a BioLab to the mix. It's not like it's a sleepy lil' quaint town with loads of charm. If all those "institutions" that are there now weren't there, the place would be a ghost-town, tumbleweeds and all.....