Niagara Gazette

Local News

January 15, 2013

CWM'S DEC permit renewal effort draws criticism, praise


Niagara Gazette — Nils Olsen, a law professor at the University at Buffalo, teaches an environmental policy clinic at the university. The Youngstown resident said he has commented on CWM Services at DEC public hearings many times before but has seen few results.

“I’m familiar both with the history of the symbiotic relationship between CWM and DEC as well as the negative effects on our community that has resulted from this relationship and the ongoing activities of the facility,” Olsen said.

Those who spoke in favor of the permit renewal — mostly members of the business community — argue that the DEC regulations are strict enough to ensure that no harm will come from allowing the company to accept more waste and that the jobs and tax revenue created by the business are good for the community.

Nadine Powell is the director of business development for the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, an employer-funded economic development organization with a stated mission of expanding private sector jobs.

Powell said the company gives remediation projects a place to send hazardous waste while “adhering to the highest standards of environmental stewardship.”

“CWM is also a multi-million contributor to the Niagara County tax base while providing stable, competitive employment for more than 60 local residents,” she said.

Jeff Brylski, the president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 449, said the company employs 25 members of his union who take pride in helping to ensure that “highly-regulated” waste is properly disposed of.

“This site has an excellent safety and compliance record,” Brylski said. “Much of this is the result of these workers and the care and dedication that they bring to the site every day.”

Bart Klettke, a life-long Niagara County resident who has worked as an engineer in the waste management field, said CWM is doing the community a service by creating tax revenues for the county on land that was contaminated before the company purchased it and has few uses.

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