Email to the DEC and the Town of Perinton

The following is an email Gary McNeil sent to the DEC on December 6th, 2017; 


I have looped in Supervisor Barker to this email chain. I wanted to accomplish two things. One, to follow up on our email correspondence to see if the DEC has met with WM yet, and two, to provide both the DEC and the Perinton Town Board the data that the Facebook group has collected between 11/4 and 11/30. My ultimate goal is to try and get you both in the same room for a meeting in order to discuss both the DEC and Town's plans going forward in relation to the odor issue. Although we have only been organizing the affected community for 5 weeks, I fear that for many in the area this is already getting to a tipping point. The odor has continually gotten worse through the month of November, and the first few days of December have been horrendous. The odor frequency, intensity, and distance of travel is all increasing at an alarming rate.

The people of Perinton are prideful of their community and will not tolerate the odor for much longer. WM told me on 11/9 that they needed 6 months to fix their infrastructure problems. That is unacceptable for this community. There are 10k+ residences affected by the odor over the last month. 1300 people have joined the Facebook group, but there are many more that are not on social media or are unaware of the group. They have no idea there is a way to log their complaints. As we plot the location of each complaint on a map, we are seeing increases in complaints 5+ miles away (we have removed outliers for the sake of integrity). Businesses that utilize the outdoor environment to serve their patrons are starting to get worried that this will not be resolved for Spring weather, specifically in the village of Fairport. The Northside/Dudley elementary school teachers and administrators are complaining of the odor seeping into their halls. Our kids should not have to deal with this.

The community needs the assurance of both the DEC and the Town of Perinton that this is at the top of the priority list. We should not be forced to spend countless hours compiling complaint data and making a case that our quality of life is compromised. People have lived in this community at the same location for 30+ years and have not had to deal with the landfill odor until more than a handful times a year until the last 6 months, when it has gotten out of hand. This is not only a handful of neighborhoods affected, it is a large swath of the Town and Village. There should be as close to a zero tolerance policy as possible when Landfills are located this close to a community as heavily populated as Perinton.

Six months ago WM emailed us that road construction over an old cell was causing the odor increase (June to September). Recently, they have told us it is infrastructure related (pipe clogs, vacuum issues). Others, including the DEC at a recent meeting, have reported that the trains coming in from NYC and other areas are sitting too long and cause odors when they are unsealed and dumped. Yet others have reported that the gas WM is required to run through the flare is too much for the flare(s) to handle, resulting in the gas being released.

I don't know exactly what the source of the odor is, and the community is concerned that WM and the DEC don't know either. It's an embarrassment that the DEC oversight has been insufficient and led to the current situation, and that the Town's contract is not more protective of it's residents. The communication coming out of both entities has also been less than ideal. People want to know that an investigation is open, what possible repercussions could be, and if the odor will be guaranteed to not come back more than 4-5 times per year. They also want to know that the expansion into Macedon will not result in future issues for Perinton residents.

Regarding the data attached, it is alarming. If more people affected knew about our FB group, the data would be astronomical. We are working to make that happen. The first few days of December data is showing at 3x the averages of November. The perception right now is that we are losing this town, it's identity, and many of the reasons we all love to live here. I'm almost at a loss that I even have to write this email and be involved to the extent I am. I run operations for a business based out of Tampa, FL, I am not a community activist and should not have to be dealing with this problem.

I will send the password separately and look forward to hearing from both of you.