Assemblyman William Colton and opponents of the Gravesend Bay Waste Transfer Station will get their day in court next week to try and stop the construction of the trash facility — which they say is a danger to community health and a waste of taxpayer money.
On June 9, an appellate court will hear arguments from Colton, as well as District Leaders Nancy Tong and Charles Ragusa, on why the permit to build the waste station should be vacated, since crucial information was not available when the permit was given.
“From the very beginning, we knew that this plan was a boondoggle and an outrageous waste of taxpayer money,” said Colton. “It also threatens the health and safety of our community and nearby communities, because toxic sediments have been dispersed during shoddy dredging operations.”
The information includes the test results of the sediment of the site, which turned out to be toxic; what pesticides will be used on the site; and where the trash will go once it is through the transfer station, according to Colton. Without this information, Colton argued, the permit should not have been given.
His opponents, attorneys for the city, will be forced to argue how the waste transfer station will be a net gain for New York, according to Colton.
Colton has been on the forefront of a years-long battle to halt the construction of the trash facility since 2012. In October 2014, Colton filed for appeal to the decision made by a judge to greenlight the construction of the station in 2013. Colton used findings that an old garbage incinerator that used to be on the site contaminated the sediment on the sea floor, and the toxic chemicals would spread when dredging began for the waste transfer station.
This has been a heated topic in the community; numerous rallies and protests have called for a stop to the construction of the site.
A second waste transfer station, in Gowanus, is completely built, but is not operating because landfills are not willing to take New York City’s trash, according to Colton. Despite the garbage having nowhere to go, construction of the Gravesend Bay waste transfer station continues.
“We warned the City that these marine transfer stations should not be constructed because there would be a huge problem finding a suitable landfill. They refused to listen,” said Colton. “Meanwhile, they are moving forward with construction of the Southwest facility while the Hamilton Avenue transfer station sits unused. And as recycling rates continue to improve, the Southwest facility may even be obsolete before construction is ever completed.“
The waste station is being built on 1824 Shore Parkway, between Bay 41st Street and 26th Avenue.