Stony Point to Seek Answers from Haverstraw, United Water on Desalination Questions

BY MICHAEL RICONDA

P1000248Stony Point – Updates on United Water’s proposed desalination plant in Haverstraw were discussed at the Stony Point Town Board’s most recent meeting on March 19, with Supervisor Geoffrey Finn promising a drive for answers on issues surrounding the plant.

Finn explained that Stony Point’s town engineer Kevin would be questioning Haverstraw’s planning board and United Water representatives for the fullest available information on the proposal and expected United Water to adhere to its promise for answers to the inquiries.

“I’ve been promised responses by United Water and when we do get them, we will address them as a town,” Finn explained.

Finn went on to say that though the town would be assertive with its inquiries at the next Haverstraw Planning Board meeting examining the project, it wished to maintain a friendly relationship with neighboring Haverstraw and is giving them about a month of time to prepare responses.

“I wanted to give them at least a month to respond to us,” Finn said. “I didn’t want to send Kevin or myself or our lawyers screaming or yelling or doing any of that. We just want what we think is best for us.”

According to Stony Point Action Committee for the Environment President George Potanovic Jr., many of the questions involve concerns about proposed changes requested by United Water related to the installation of a pumping station for the plant and the subsequent environmental impact on the Town of Haverstraw.

Potanovic argued the components should be examined as a whole by the DEC, but Haverstraw segmented and examined the pumping station and intake pipe as separate components to hastily give variances and expedite the project.

“The DEC is not done with its review yet,” Potanovic said. Why is the Town of Haverstraw zoning board looking at variances before the project itself has even been accepted or not by the DEC?”

Potanovic also provided the board with an update on a state Department of Environmental Conservation report on the plant, which is still under review but is expected to be released at any time, and announced a formal debate between county executive candidates on the desalination plant and other environmental issues. The debate will be held at the Clarkstown Town Hall on April 18 at 7:30 p.m.

In addition to the desalination discussion, the Town Board also approved surveys for the Algonquin Incremental Markup Project, sent the town planner’s recommendations on the CSX Haverstraw track upgrade project to the planning board, and announced a workshop meeting on the town’s new master plan on April 3 at 7 p.m.