Seneca Meadows, Inc.
April 19, 2006
NOTICE OF LEGISLATIVE PUBLIC HEARING
AND ISSUES CONFERENCE
Seneca Meadows, Inc.
1786 Salcman Road
Waterloo, New York 13165-9444
DEC Application ID #: 8-4532-00023/00046
APPLICABLE STATUTORY AND REGULATORY PROVISIONS, PERMITS APPLIED FOR:
Applicant, Seneca Meadows, Inc. ("SMI") and staff of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation ("DEC" or "Department") propose to convene the hearings and environmental review on this proposed project in two stages pursuant to section 617.10(a)(2) of title 6 of the Official Compilation of Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State of New York ("6 NYCRR").
Stage 1: Environmental Conservation Law of the State of New York ("ECL") Article 24 (Freshwater Wetlands Permit) and 6 NYCRR Part 663; Federal Clean Water Act - Section 401 (Water Quality Certification).
Stage 2 (covered later): ECL Article 27 (Solid Waste Management Facility Permit) and 6 NYCRR Part 360; ECL Article 19 (Air Pollution Control - Title V) and 6 NYCRR Part 200 et seq.; ECL Article 17 (State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System - General Permit No. GP-02-01 for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity) and 6 NYCRR Part 750.
SMI's application includes a 178-acre expansion to be located adjacent to the existing solid waste landfill located in Seneca Falls, Seneca County. The expansion will create approximately 28.6 million tons of disposal capacity and will allow 14 years of landfilling at the current rate of 6,000 tons per day. SMI requests the expansion because current capacity will be filled in 2009. SMI proposes a fill of 71 acres of Class 2 regulated Freshwater Wetlands due to a new landfill footprint. SMI proposes that an additional 1.67 acres of regulated wetland be converted or temporarily disturbed due to the relocation of utilities. The project includes the relocation of a portion of Black Brook and a new Route 414 bridge to accommodate the redirected flows. SMI proposes a wetland mitigation project to be located on the Dove Property which is contiguous with SMI's land holdings between Route 414 and Black Brook Road. The proposed mitigation project would restore 419 acres of former wetland and enhance another 157 acres of existing wetland.
As indicated above, SMI proposes to apply for the applicable permits in a two-stage process. SMI has submitted a Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement ("DGEIS") that evaluates all aspects of the proposed landfill expansion. A supplemental State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) may be required during Stage 2 if the Stage 2 permit applications indicate that the proposed expansion may result in environmental impacts that were not adequately addressed in a Final GEIS. A more detailed project description and discussion of the permitting process has been provided in a Notice of Complete Application and Acceptance of DGEIS which appeared in the Environmental Notice Bulletin on March 8, 2006 and in the Reveille Between the Lakes on March 9, 2006.
SEQRA STATUS AND ACCEPTANCE OF A DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT:
The Department, acting as the lead agency for the review of this project pursuant to the State Environmental Quality Review Act (ECL Article 8 ["SEQRA"]), made the determination that the revised DGEIS is adequate for public review and issued a Notice of Complete Application and Acceptance of the DGEIS on March 1, 2006.
PUBLIC LEGISLATIVE HEARING AND SEQRA DGEIS HEARING:
In accordance with the provisions of 6 NYCRR Parts 617, 621, and 624, a legislative hearing will be held before Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") Helene G. Goldberger on May 16, 2006 at the Seneca Falls Community Center, located at 35 Water Street, Seneca Falls, NY at 7:00 p.m. The purpose of the legislative hearing is to receive additional unsworn statements from the public on the permit applications and the Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement.
Staff and the applicant propose that the Stage 2 permit applications and any required supplemental SEQR filings will be addressed in a subsequent hearing process.
All persons, organizations, corporations or government agencies that may be affected by the project are invited to attend the hearing session and to submit oral or written comments. Written comments on the DGEIS may be sent to Helene G. Goldberger, Administrative Law Judge, at the address given below. It is not necessary to file a written request in advance to speak at the legislative hearing.
The hearing location is reasonably accessible to persons with a mobility impairment. Interpreter services shall be made available to deaf persons, at no charge, upon written request to the ALJ at least 10 business days before the hearing.
ISSUES CONFERENCE: A pre-adjudicatory hearing issues conference will be held on June 6, 2006, at 10:00 a.m. at the Holiday Inn Waterloo - Seneca Falls located at 2468 Mount Rt 414, Waterloo, NY and will continue on succeeding days as necessary. The purpose of the issues conference will be to define, narrow and resolve, if possible, the issues concerning the permit application. Based upon the issues conference record, the ALJ will determine what issues, if any, require adjudication, and will define the scope of such issues. Participation at the issues conference will be limited to Department staff, applicant and those persons requesting party status pursuant to 6 NYCRR 624.4 and 624.5 in advance of the issues conference.
IT IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT THAT ANY PERSONS REQUESTING PARTY STATUS APPEAR OR BE REPRESENTED AT THE ISSUES CONFERENCE IN ORDER THAT ALL VALID ISSUES MAY BE FULLY DISCUSSED. An adjudicatory hearing will, if necessary, be scheduled following the issues conference. The issues conference may be canceled if no filings for party status are received by the deadline listed below.
FILING FOR PARTY STATUS AND PROPOSED ISSUES: To participate at the issues conference, parties must file a written petition requesting party status including the facts intended for presentation pursuant to 6 NYCRR 624.4(c) and 624.5(b). In addition, any petition must fully identify the proposed party and the names(s) of the persons(s) who will act as the party's representative(s), the party's environmental interests, the statutory considerations relevant to the project, whether the request is for full party status or amicus status, and the precise grounds for opposing or supporting the project. Mere opposition to the project is not a sufficient basis to be granted party status.
If seeking full party status, the petitioner must propose issues that could result in permit denial, major modification of the proposed project or the imposition of significant permit conditions. The petition must identify all statutory and regulatory requirements which may not be met and explain why. If a party intends to rely upon expert testimony, the petition must also include an offer of proof that specifies the witness(es), the nature of the arguments and other evidence that the party intends to present at the hearing, and the grounds upon which the assertions are based regarding the proposed issues.
Persons having similar interests of concern are encouraged to file as a consolidated party.
All petitions requesting either full party status or amicus status must be received at the DEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, by 5:00 p.m. on May 30, 2006. Electronic filings and service by fax will NOT be accepted. Such filings must be submitted to the following:
1. Helene G. Goldberger, Administrative Law Judge, NYS DEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services, 625 Broadway, Albany, New York 12233-1550;
2. Paul D'Amato, Esq., Regional Attorney, NYSDEC Region 8, 6274 East Avon-Lima Road, Avon, New York 14414; and
3. Scott M. Turner, Esq., Nixon Peabody LLP, Clinton Square , P.O. Box 31051 Rochester, NY 14603. (counsel for the applicant)
The DGEIS and associated documents, the permit applications, and SMI's subsequent correspondence including information regarding on-site alternatives, are available for public review at the Department's Region 8 Office, 6274 East Avon-Lima Road, Avon, New York, 14414; at the Seneca Falls Town Hall at 10 Falls Street, Seneca Falls, NY; and at the Waterloo and Seneca Falls public libraries. The Department's ongoing technical review comments are also available at these locations. The DGEIS is also available on the applicant's web page at "www.senecameadows.com", Public Documents for Expansion.
AVAILABILITY FOR PUBLIC COMMENT:
The comment period has been extended to 10 days after the date of the legislative hearing. Comments on this project must be received by May 26, 2006.
Contacts: Kimberly A. Merchant, Deputy Regional Permit Administrator, 585- 226-5392 and Peter A. Lent, Regional Permit Administrator, 585-226-5390; 6274 E. Avon-Lima Road, Avon, NY 14414.
Chief Administrative Law Judge
Dated: Albany, New York
April 19, 2006