Seneca Meadows, Inc.
April 16, 2007
NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION
COMBINED NOTICE OF LEGISLATIVE PUBLIC HEARING
AND ISSUES CONFERENCE
Seneca Meadows, Inc.
1786 Salcman Road
Waterloo, NY 13165-9444
DEC Application ID #: 8-4532-00023/00001 and 8-4532-00023/00041
APPLICABLE STATUTORY AND REGULATORY PROVISIONS, PERMITS APPLIED FOR:
Applicant Seneca Meadows, Inc. (SMI) and staff of the New York Stage Department of Environmental Conservation ("DEC" or "Department") have convened the hearings and environmental review on this proposed project in two stages pursuant to Parts 617, 621, and 624 of Title 6 of the Official Compilation of Codes, Rules and Regulations of the State of New York (6 NYCRR).
Stage 1 (covered earlier): Environmental Conservation Law of the State of New York (ECL), Article 24 Freshwater Wetlands; Federal Clean Water Act - Section 401 (Water Quality Certification). The Department issued these permits in October, 2006.
Stage 2: ECL - Article 27, Title 7 (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.; and ECL Article 17, Title 8 (State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System - SPDES General Permit No. GP-02-01 for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activity and SPDES General Permit No. GP-0-06-002 SPDES Multi-Sector General Permit)
SMI has submitted an application for a 181-acre landfill expansion to be located adjacent to the existing solid waste landfill located on or adjacent to Route 414 in the Town of Seneca Falls, Seneca County, New York. The expansion will create approximately 31.2 million tons of disposal capacity and will allow an additional 14 years of landfilling at the current approved design capacity of 6,000 tons per day (average daily tonnage rate). The expansion was requested because SMI's current capacity will be filled in 2009. The Facility's existing Part 360 Solid Waste Management Facility Permit will be modified to cover all phases of construction and operation of the landfill expansion including the double composite liner system, leachate collection, grading, gas collection and control, stormwater management, tire processing, cover systems, closure and post-closure, waste filling, and environmental monitoring and noise monitoring. There are no changes proposed to the hours of operation. The Part 360 permit for the existing landfill will be modified to reference the Landfill Expansion engineering plans and reports.
Air Pollution - Title V Facility Permit
The original Title V permit issued for the operation of a Seneca Meadows, Inc. (SMI) sanitary landfill located at 1786 Salcman Road in the Town of Seneca Falls, NY authorized the operation of three emission units including: Emission Unit 1-Leach (leachate tank), Emission Unit 1-LFGAS (landfill gas from four landfill areas and associated control equipment), and Emission Unit 1-Soils (temporary BUD material storage). This permit was renewed and modified on March 23, 2007.
The facility is located adjacent to the Seneca Energy, Inc. (SEI) Landfill Gas to Energy (LFGTE) facility which purchases landfill gas from Seneca Meadows and generates electricity from landfill gas. Although SMI anticipates that much of the LFG from the proposed expansion will be combusted in SEI' s LFGTE facility, SEI will not take on LFG or generate emissions beyond its current permit limits.
SMI 's permit application to modify the Title V Facility Permit includes the additional landfill gas (LFG) from the proposed Expansion which will not be combusted by SEI. The applicant proposes to modify SMI's existing Title V permit to incorporate a new 1-LFGAS landfill activity (LEXP1), which is the proposed landfill expansion area, and a new -1-LEACH leachate storage activity, which is a new aboveground leachate storage tank (TANK2).
The existing facility is minor with respect to Prevention of Significant Deterioration and New Source Review (PSD/NSR). The proposed expansion subjects the facility to 6NYCRR Part 227-2 NOx RACT. The proposed modified Title V permit will include a cap for total facility emissions of less than 200 TPY of NOx and less than 500 TPY of CO, thus capping the facility below the significant source thresholds for applicability to PSD/NSR. This limitation will be made enforceable by a permit condition in the modified Title V permit prohibiting waste placement after year 2017 (or the year in which collected LFG approaches 10,093 cfm or the amount of gas calculated to keep the facility below the caps), unless SMI has secured, through contract, end users for LFG. In addition, the end user's permits will need to be in place at that time in order for waste placement to continue. Upon issuance of this modification, SMI will become a major facility with respect to PSD and NSR and therefore any proposed future modifications requiring increases in CO or NOx will require PSD/NSR permit applications.
A more detailed project description has been provided in a Notice of Complete Application and Acceptance of DGEIS which appeared in the Environmental Notice Bulletin on April 4, 2007 (See Region 8 - Seneca County at this webpage on DEC 's website http://www.dec.ny.gov/enb2006/20060308/index.html) and in the Reveille Between the Lakes on April 4, 2007.
The hearing described in this notice is for the second stage of the two-stage review. The Stage 1 permits including the Article 24 Freshwater Wetland and the 401 - Clean Water Act Water Quality Certification were publicly noticed, reviewed and issued contingent upon issuance of the Stage 2 permits. The Stage 2 permit applications, including the Part 360 Solid Waste Management Facility, Part 201 State Air Facility, and Notices of Intent for General Permits for Stormwater Discharges from Construction and Industrial Activities, were submitted on December 22, 2006 and are the subject of this review.
SEQRA STATUS AND ACCEPTANCE OF A DRAFT SUPPLEMENTAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT:
The proposed landfill expansion has already been the subject of a Draft and Final Generic Environmental Impact Statement. The purpose of this Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (DSEIS) is to address potential impacts that may result from the landfill expansion now that the detailed design is available. The DSEIS includes detailed noise and visual studies.
The Department made the determination that the revised DSEIS is adequate for public review on March 20, 2007. Acceptance and distribution of the DSEIS gives the public an opportunity to comment on the action's environmental impacts, various alternatives regarding the action and the measures to be taken to mitigate the impacts, so such comments may be part of the final decision making considerations of the Department and other involved agencies.
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 to receive additional unsworn statements from the public on the permit application, draft permits, and the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement on May 21, 2007 at Vince's Park, Old State Road, (corner of NYS Routes 5 & 20 and 318), Seneca Falls, NY, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. This hearing is to take comments on the Stage 2 permit applications only. 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 DSEIS and draft permits may be sent to ALJ Goldberger at the address indicated 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 May 22, 2007 at 10:00 a.m. at Vince's Park, Old State Road, (corner of NYS Routes 5 & 20 and 318), Seneca Falls, NY and will continue on succeeding days as necessary. The purpose of the issues conference is to define, narrow and resolve, if possible, any issues concerning the permit application. Participation at the issues conference will be limited to the Department staff, the applicant, and those persons requesting party status pursuant to 6 NYCRR §§ 624.4 and 624.5 in advance of the issues conference. After the issues conference, the ALJ will determine what issues, if any, require adjudication, and will define the scope of such issues.
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 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 documentary evidence that the party intends to present at the hearing, and the grounds upon which the assertions are based regarding the proposed issues.
For amicus status, the filing must identify the nature of the legal or policy issues to be briefed, and provide a statement explaining why the proposed amicus is in the special position with respect to those issues, as required by 6 NYCRR § 624.5(b)(3).
Persons having similar interests of concern are encouraged to file as a consolidated party. The hearing provisions can be found at www.dec.state.ny.us/website/ohms/gudph1.htm, A Guide to Permit Hearings.
All petitions requesting either full party status or amicus status must be received at the DEC Office of Hearings and Mediation Services by no later than May 15, 2007. 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 Turner, Nixon Peabody LLP, Clinton Square, Clinton Square, P.O. Box 31051, Rochester, NY, 14603. (Counsel for the Applicant)
The DSEIS and associated documents, the permit applications, and the draft permits 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. Persons wishing to inspect the subject files, including the application with all relevant supporting materials, the draft permit, and all other materials available to the DEC that are relevant to this permitting decision should contact the DEC representative listed below. It is recommended that an appointment be made to confirm the availability of the subject files. The DEC will endeavor to make the files available within 2 business days of contact, during normal business hours (8:30 a.m. through 4:45 p.m.), unless the requester wishes to inspect the files at a later date.
The DSEIS is also available on the applicant's web page at http://www.senecameadows.com/.
The Draft Title V Permit and Permit Review Report may be viewed or downloaded as .pdf files at: http://www.dec.ny.gov/dardata/boss/afs/draft_atv.html
AVAILABILITY FOR PUBLIC COMMENT:
The comment period has been extended from May 4, 2007 to June 1, 2007. Comments submitted after the hearing should be submitted in writing to the Kimberly A. Merchant at the address below.
DEC Region 8 Contact: Kimberly A. Merchant, Deputy Regional Permit Administrator, phone (585) 226-5392; 6274 E. Avon-Lima Road, Avon, NY 14414.
James T. McClymonds
Chief Administrative Law Judge
Dated: Albany, New York
April 16, 2007