By Nathan Mayberg
MONTICELLO October 18, 2005 The Village of Monticellos proposed local law to restrict the expansion of the Sullivan County Landfill is expected to be voted on by the board November 7.
The law has been in the works for several months and has undergone two public hearings.
The board was scheduled to vote on the law last night, but Mayor James Barnicle said it would be tabled due to the lack of an official 239 review by the county.
The law states that the existing community character of the Village of Monticello will be adversely and unalterably impacted by expansion of existing solid or liquid management facilities or location and operation of new solid or liquid waste management facilities within the Village of Monticello.
The landfill is located in between a residential and business section of the village off Broadway and Rose Valley Road.
The law goes on to state that it is meant to protect the residents of the Village of Monticello from undesirable effects of solid waste disposal operations including, without limitation: unaesthetic results, including odors, blowing liners, increased traffic, dust and noise; and deterioration in property values associated with an adjacent or proximate disposal operation that may interfere with the orderly development of properties; and threats to public health and/or the environment by contamination of air, surface water or groundwaters.
The law exercises the villages power under the Municipal Home Rule Law and the villages own law for the physical and mental well-being and safety of its citizens and to restrict waste disposal operations within the village.
The law would only apply to the proposed Phase 2 expansion of the landfill, which is currently being reviewed by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. It would not be enforced until the actual construction of Phase 2. Once construction began, the village would issue a stop-work order and go to court.
The law proposes penalties of a Class A misdemeanor and a fine of $1,000 or imprisonment for one year for every day the local law is violated. In addition, a civil penalty of $1,000 for each day the law is violated would also be enforced. The law provides the village the ability to obtain an injunction in court to prevent further violations.
Barnicle said he is hoping such actions do not come to fruition.
I am hoping it doesnt come to this, said the mayor.
The mayor and Village Manager Richard Sush have met with the county periodically to discuss alternatives to expanding the landfill. However, the County Legislature has not stopped any efforts to move forward with the expansion.
The village and Town of Thompson have both endorsed working with Taylor Recycling as an alternative to the landfill. The town is currently looking at transporting its waste to Rockland County for the time being.
Barnicle said that Taylor Recycling is currently searching for a site to locate its gasification and recycling plant inside the town.
The mayor indicated that he would vote for the local law. He cited public hearings over the last few months in which village residents argued vehemently for a law to restrict the expansion of the landfill.
Trustee Scott Schoonmaker has been supportive of the law since it was first proposed.
Trustee Gordon Jenkins has been more cautious, stating he has concerns about exporting waste.
Trustee Victor Marinello was supportive of using Taylor Recycling as an alternative to the landfill but has yet to speak out publicly in favor of the local law.
Barnicle summed up his feelings on the local law and the villages support for Taylor Recycling by saying it is the one step we can [take] to show [residents] that we are looking at everyones concerns. . . . It is a better alternative than just expanding the landfill.