September 5, 2013

Kate's Butter to miss move deadline

The busy company says it needs four extra months to shift from Old Orchard Beach to its new building.

By Jessica Hall jhall@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

OLD ORCHARD BEACH - Kate's Homemade Butter says its new production facility in Arundel will not be completed until Feb. 1, delaying its anticipated move from Old Orchard Beach by about four months.

click image to enlarge

Tim Heffernan boxes some of the million-plus pounds of Kate’s Homemade Butter made annually in Old Orchard Beach. Neighbors say Kate’s is too big to be operating near homes.

Gregory Rec/2011 Press Herald file

Old Orchard Beach officials have said that Kate's must vacate its home-based operation by Sept. 30 or face the potential loss of its business license. Kate's, which has been a home-based business since 1981, was required to inform the town by Aug. 30 whether it would be able to meet that deadline.

In a letter to the Old Orchard Beach Business Review Board, dated Aug. 30, Kate's co-owner Daniel Patry said the company had consulted with all of its major subcontractors about the schedule for completing the building in Arundel.

"All of the companies involved agree that February 1st is a date Kate's Butter can stand behind in order to complete the factory in Arundel," Patry said in the letter. "We will continue to operate under the constraints of the consent agreement as we have for the past 12 months."

Kate's, which produces more than 1 million pounds of butter a year, operates in about 1,000 square feet of a garage at a home in Old Orchard Beach.

Its relocation has been slowed by problems with the construction of its 17,600-square-foot plant in Arundel.

In a consent agreement reached with the town last year, Kate's said it would modify its hours of operation, reduce the size of its delivery trucks and plant trees and install other barriers to reduce noise.

Neighbors have complained that Kate's, which has trucks delivering raw materials and taking away finished products, has outgrown its location and should no longer operate in a neighborhood.

The company met with the Town Council last month to "discuss the past, present and future of Kate's Butter in Old Orchard Beach," Patry said in the letter.

"It was very refreshing to be able to sit down with the new council and openly discuss our situation in moving," said Lucas Patry, Daniel Patry's son. "The new councilors seemed to support small business while keeping the concerns of neighbors close at heart."

Town officials will meet with Kate's owners at 5 p.m. Sept. 18 to discuss the company's next step. Kate's did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.

"They've had a long time to move. I really don't know the reason for the delay," said Harry Bailey, a neighbor of Kate's. "It's time. It's not a friendly situation." 

Jessica Hall can be contacted at 791-6316 or at:

jhall@pressherald.com

 

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