- Front Porch
WALLINGFORD — State and town officials share concerns about Clavet Trucking Inc., a local company that was cited by environmental regulators earlier this year for stockpiling unpermitted materials at its South Broad Street location.
In June, the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection issued a notice of violation to the company, headquartered at 1158 Yale Ave., for storing over 10 cubic meters of material at 1171 S. Broad St. without proper permits. The material consisted of scrap metal, street millings, plastic and metal drums, treated wood, land clearing debris, stumps, logs and scrap tires. That same month, Town Planner Kacie Costello issued a cease-and- desist order to Roland Clavet, president of the company, to halt stockpiling at the site.
“They have not complied with the cease-and- desist,” Costello said.
On Tuesday, Costello responded to a complaint from Town Councilor Nick Economopoulos and found that fresh street millings were illegally being stored on the property. Costello referred the matter to the Law Department, which may look into taking further legal action, she said.
Economopoulos also filed a complaint with DEEP, alleging that “Clavet Trucking is hauling asphalt millings generated by a state Department of Transportation road project on Route 150 ...” according to the Sept. 17 complaint.
A call to a number listed for Clavet Trucking was not returned on Thursday.
According to DEEP, Clavet did not respond to the agency’s June notice of violation within the required 30-day period. On Aug. 1, DEEP sent Clavet another letter notifying him of his lack of response. The letter also referred to possible fines for non-compliance — up to $25,000 per day.
“If the company remains unresponsive to our requests for compliance we will have to consider moving to more serious enforcement steps against them — which could involve legal action with the potential of substantial financial penalties,” the letter states.
As of early September, Clavet Trucking had yet to make a formal response to DEEP, according to a Sept. 10 email exchange between Economopoulos and DEEP sanitary engineer Laurene Buckowski.
“The department has not received anything in writing to date,” Buckowski wrote. “The department had a phone conversation with the owner of the property on August 12, 2013. The owner stated that he had worked with the town and cleaned up the site.”
That the company continued to violate town and state orders by storing street millings on Tuesday is unacceptable, and local enforcement of environmental standards need improvement, Economopoulos said.
Improving enforcement is the point of a citation ordinance being considered by the town’s Ordinance Committee, Costello said. The ordinance would allow Costello, as the acting zoning enforcement officer, to impose fines. She is not allowed to fine violators at this point, and can only refer issues to the Law Department, which can then bring a violator to court.
“I only have so much ability and that’s why there have been discussions over things such as a potential citation ordinance, which would give the zoning enforcement officer a little more teeth,” she said.
Costello said she has talked with Clavet and is working toward bringing the company into compliance. DEEP will continue its investigation of the company, DEEP spokesman Dennis Schain said.
The town was also cited by DEEP in June for illegally stockpiling material at 91 N. Turnpike Road, a Public Works storage site. Over 1,200 tons of street sweepings and catch basin materials were stored at the site without a permit. The site sits above a protected aquifer and nearby protected wetlands. Public Works Director Henry McCully has worked through the summer to bring the town to compliance, and fines aren’t expected.
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