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Gruner, Robert - Decision, December 10, 1998

Decision, December 10, 1998

STATE OF NEW YORK : DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION

In the Matter

- of -

the Application by Robert Gruner For a renewal of a waste transporter permit,
pursuant to Environmental Conservation Law Article 27 and Title 6 of
the Official Compilation of Codes and Regulations of the State of New York, Part 364
File No. 3-5100-00035/00001-0
Permit No.56-046

DECISION OF THE COMMISSIONER

On October 29, 1998, Administrative Law Judge ("ALJ") Frank Montecalvo issued a Recommended Decision in the matter of the application of Robert Gruner for renewal of his waste transporter permit. Pursuant to 6 NYCRR §624.13(a)(3), the parties were allowed to file comments and exceptions on the ALJ's Recommended Decision. Applicant commented that the Recommended Decision should be adopted by the Commissioner. The Department Staff neither commented nor opposed the Recommended Decision.

The ALJ's attached decision explains that Applicant Gruner seeks renewal of his waste transporter permit so that he may continue to transport and dispose of septage at the so-called "Gruner Lagoons" in the Town of Lloyd, Ulster County. There are several (more than three) septage impoundments at the Gruner site. Three of them became contaminated with chlorobenzene, apparently some 19 or 20 years ago. The others are not. Staff objected to renewal of the permit because continued disposal of septage into the contaminated impoundments could have an adverse impact on the environment by flushing chlorobenzene contaminants into nearby groundwater. The ALJ's decision is that the three contaminated impoundments should not be used, but that the others may be used, and he recommends renewal of the permit on condition that continued disposal may take place only in impoundments in which chlorobenzene is absent or present in only negligible amounts. I concur. Continued disposal into the non-contaminated impoundments will not cause or contribute to a contravention of water quality standards under the facts presented. Moreover, interpreting 6 NYCRR § 364.1(c)(13) as applicable to individual impoundments, and not necessarily to the site as a whole, is reasonable under the circumstances of this case.

The Recommended Decision is adopted as my Decision in this case. This matter is remanded to Staff for disposition as provided in the ALJ's recommended decision.

_____________/s/_____________
John P. Cahill,
Commissioner

Dated: Albany, New York
December 10, 1998

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