Letter: Inclusion of landfill is a giveaway to GE

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To the editor:

I sat and listened at the public hearing in Lee, Wednesday, Feb. 19, to the EPA and the officials of five towns rationalize the idea of a toxic waste dump, full of PCBs, to be constructed at the Lee/Lenox line, at the site of an old gravel bed. A dump that will be built to a requirement of only 15 feet minimum depth to groundwater. Of course there will be a liner, actually two liners, made of plastic. They call it "low level" toxic waste. How is toxic "low level"? I always thought the definition of the word toxic was harmful, poisonous.

The representative from the EPA was trying to convince us that the dump will be safe, always. The officials were either missing the point or just putting up a smoke screen. It was made clear by the communities of Lee and Lenox that were represented at the meeting, that we do not want this at all. No dump. If dredging is going to happen, send ALL of the stuff away, out of Berkshire County to a registered facility that is designed for hazardous waste.

Who benefits from this deal? GE. The company that uncontrollably polluted the Housatonic River for years and has never been made to completely clean up or take full responsibility for the damage it caused in Berkshire County and beyond. GE is demanding that the communities of Lee and Lenox take the consequences for its irresponsibility because, like someone said at the meeting, "they are not honorable." The officials of Lee and Lenox, along with other towns, took a payoff in this deal. The biggest, $25 million each, to the two towns of Lee and Lenox.

You can speak out, have a voice in this, something that was not given to us before this deal was made.

Call, write, email. Petition. Bring attention to this matter. At least you will know that you voiced your concern whatever the outcome. There will be another public meeting on Thursday, March 5, at Herberg Middle School, Auditorium in Pittsfield at 6:00 p. m. There will be a public comment period to contact the EPA. There should be notification when this starts. Usually, it lasts for 45 days. Written comments will be considered by the EPA. All of Berkshire County is affected by this.

Someone who lives very close to the proposed site asked the question Wednesday night, to all of the officials present, if any of them would live near the toxic waste dump. None of them raised their hand. Enough said.

Debra Kelly,




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