Press-Republican

Local News

June 8, 2014

Town Council wants building cleanup rolling again

MOOERS — A pile of rubble from a demolished building here hasn’t budged since the state halted cleanup in early April.

But officials say the Town Council will likely vote at its June 10 meeting on appropriating funds to get the process rolling again.

And there has been plenty of action behind the scenes, they say, to craft a plan to safely clear the lot at the corner of Route 11 and Maple Street of the asbestos-ridden debris. 

“It’s like five bureaucracies coordinating,” Mooers Building Code Officer Jess Dixon said.

That’s an army of effort compared to the April action, when Town Supervisor Jeff Menard took it upon himself to hire Rouses Point contractor Randy Bedard of Bedard’s Excavation to haul the rubble away.

Menard bypassed the Town Council to get the work going, justifying that decision with a resolution passed earlier that gave him permission “to move forward with the assistance of (Town Attorney Thomas Murnane), on the cleanup process,” according to meeting minutes.

NO TARP 

About two days into the work, the State Department of Labor ordered it halted; a few weeks later, samples taken by that agency identified asbestos, which is a known carcinogen.

And then, upon notification of that fact by Dixon, Northeastern Clinton Central School officials shut down nearby Mooers Elementary School out of caution, since asbestos can be carried on the breeze.

After air-quality testing, classes resumed.

And town officials said the debris would be secured by a special tarp while a plan was forged for its proper removal.

That tarp was not installed.

“It’s better to clean it up and get it out of there than cap it,” Dixon said earlier this week. 

ASBESTOS ENGINEER

That decision, he said, came of consultation with asbestos-removal expert LVI Environmental Services Inc. of Massena and Plattsburgh firm KAS.

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