To the editor:

We are residents and property owners on Eagle Street in Philmont. We have been asking questions about the former DPW site for 10 years. When Habitat for Humanity proposed a duplex or two duplexes on the site, we had concerns of the contamination of the property due to the building’s demolition, fuel spills and its historic use. The site had two reported fuel spills that were reported to DEC; both required remediation. One of them also affected the adjacent property owner. We have many questions.

Question -1: Why are the Village Trustees so anxious to get rid of the property?

Question -2: How can the Village Attorney change the zoning for the property from commercial use to residential? The property was used as commercial since at least 1952.

Question -3: On the Environmental Assessment sheet for the Zoning Board, Brenda Adams from Habitat for Humanity completed the form and she left the question blank about environmental hazards and remediation. We attended several Zoning Board meetings and not one Zoning Board member questioned why Ms. Adams left this question blank.

Question -4: On the Environmental Assessment Sheet for the Planning Board, Daniel Russell representing Habitat for Humanity completed the form and stated that there were no environmental hazards and no remediation was performed on the property or adjacent properties. We attended the Planning Board meeting and raised concerns about the environmental history. Why did the Planning board members not question why the form stated that there had been no environmental problems on the site?

Question -5: Are the Planning Board and Zoning Board working in the best interest for all current and future residents of the Village of Philmont?

Question -6: Why don’t representatives for Habitat for Humanity complete the Environmental Assessment forms truthfully and why didn’t the village Zoning and Planning Boards ask questions of Habitat for Humanity’s application since we provided information that showed the environmental history of the site? It seems as if the environmental history of the site is being ignored.

Caroline ONeill

Kate Martino


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