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State gives Quincy 2 weeks to fix marsh project

Posted by Jessica Bartlett  October 31, 2013 02:58 PM

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Quincy officials will have only weeks to correct problems next to the Broad Meadow Marsh or face a $25,000 penalty, after allegedly using yard waste for erosion control in the area.

In an administrative order from the Department of Environmental Protection, issued Oct. 28, city officials were faulted for placing “solid waste” in an area near the Broad Meadows Marsh.

The report specifies that the waste should be removed within 14 days of receiving permission from Quincy’s Conservation Commission. Erosion-control measures are to be put in place in the interim.

According to city officials, that work is already under way.

“Part of this [order is] the result of discussions [with the Department of Environmental Protection],” Timmins said. “At the time they spoke with me and we’ve been going back and forth about what happened and how we’re going to address it, so we’re very comfortable with [the timeline].”

The request to the Conservation Commission was submitted on Oct. 23, and a hearing has been scheduled for Nov. 6, Timmins said.

The state department had already issued a verbal stop order a week prior after discovering the violation during an Oct. 9 inspection.

Park Department employees had allegedly used approximately 800 cubic yards of yard waste in the area of the Broad Meadow Marsh restoration project as erosion control.

According to Timmins, the yard waste was merely tailings - often comprised of rocks, twigs, and sometimes plastic. The plastic had been removed and the remainder had been put in the area and covered with dirt.

However, the actions went against state rules, and the tailings will have to be removed, state officials said. In the interim, workers have put hay over the area to stop erosion or run off.

Although Timmins said Park Department employees felt they were already working under permits for the Broad Meadow Marsh project, Department of Environmental Protection personnel also faulted the city for not filing a notice of intent with their agency to do the initial work.

The city will be required to submit a Notice of Intent to the state for the cleanup work.

Even with a possible penalty hanging over city officials’ heads, Timmins said there isn’t a real risk of a fine.

“I don’t think there will be any issues with fines,” Timmins said. “We agree the material has to come out, and we have a plan to get it out" in a timely manner.

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