Vernon has finished cleaning up the debris field on township-owned property, Mayor Howard Burrell reported on May 10.
Joseph Wallace, owner of the infamous 75-foot waste pile on Silver Spruce Drive elsewhere in the township, informed the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) about the debris.
The DEP declared the cleanup complete after an April 13 visit to the debris field. “This is a large piece of town-owned property, with a small portion being occupied by our Department of Public Works’ temporary storage facility, and another small portion being the location where we plan to build a municipal pump track,” Burrell said.
He said the DEP dug test pits in eight locations that were 8 to 10 feet deep, 5 to 7 feet wide, and 8 to 10 feet long. DEP said none of the pits revealed any solid waste, toxic or non-toxic, buried on this property, he said. “With these two positive conclusions from the New Jersey DEP, the mayor and council will now proceed expeditiously with specific actions that are required to make a municipal pump track a reality,” said Burrell.
The council introduced a $4 million bond ordinance that chief financial officer Donelle Bright said includes $175,000 budgeted for the pump track.
The DEP’s records of the April 13 compliance visit still show that the township built a solid waste facility without a permit. The records say compliance will be achieved after the removal of two stockpiles of street sweepings that contain concentrations of benzo(a)pyrene above the standard that determines the toxicity of soil through human contact.