Senator Robert Singer (R-Ocean, Monmouth) wrote a letter to the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders to express his concerns about a proposed solid waste facility in Howell.
“This kind of facility could end up causing a lot of headaches for local residents,” Senator Singer said. “I have a lot of concerns regarding the environmental impact of the facility, as well as the potential traffic problems it could create. I hope the Freeholder Board considers these issues as they discuss the future of this project.”
According to a report by the Shore News Network, the facility will include a 25,000 square-foot main building and will process up to 1,500 tons of waste daily. The new construction will also require traffic upgrades near its location at Randolph and Lakewood-Farmingdale roads.
A public hearing is scheduled to take place on Thursday, July 27, at 1 p.m. at the Monmouth County Hall of Records, in Freehold.
“I understand the importance of improving the county’s solid waste infrastructure, but as with any such project, hearing concerns from local citizens is crucial to the approval process,” Senator Singer said. “The residents of Howell — the people who will be most-affected by this project — should be given a better opportunity to have their voices heard.”
Below is the full text of the letter:
July 25, 2017
The Honorable Lillian G. Burry
Monmouth County Freeholder Director
Hall of Records
Freehold, NJ 07728
Dear Freeholder Director Burry:
As an elected official, I am writing to express my concerns with the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders’ proposed amendments to the Monmouth County Solid Waste Management Plan and the potential construction of a new solid waste facility in Howell.
I understand the importance of improving the county’s solid waste infrastructure, but as with any such project, hearing concerns from local citizens is crucial to the approval process. That leads me to perhaps my biggest concern. Scheduling the public hearing for the amendments in the middle of the day outside of town does not give the residents who would be most affected by this project the best chance to have their voices heard. I believe the meeting should be held in Howell at a more convenient time in order to provide as many local residents as possible with an opportunity to address the board.
This project could have a huge impact on the lives of homeowners in the area. The facility would be home to a massive operation, and residents should be given the opportunity to review the plan and understand exactly what is being proposed. Notices for this meeting went out less than two weeks before the scheduled date. I don’t think this is fair at a time during the summer when people are more likely to be thinking about their vacations than meetings about waste management projects.
Waste management experts have estimated that the facility could attract as many as 500 to 600 trucks per day. Lakewood-Farmingdale Road is already incredibly busy, and adding this kind of volume — even with improvements to the road — could cause a huge traffic nightmare for drivers.
There are also concerns about what kind of effects the project could have on the environment. The property is located next to a stream, leaving many to worry about what kind of impact construction, as well as operation of the facility will have on this body of water and the surrounding environment.
I look forward to working with you and the rest of the Freeholder Board on this issue. Thank you for your dedicated service to all of the people of Monmouth County.
Senator – 30th Legislative District
Deputy Freeholder Director John P. Curley
Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone
Freeholder Gary J. Rich Sr.
Freeholder Serena DiMaso