Chain Bridge

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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Crow Lane Landfill -- MassDEP Update 09/30/2015

Crow Lane Landfill Update —September 30, 2015

This update is being provided by MassDEP concerning the closure activities that are currently underway at the Crow Lane Landfill.

In addition to this email update, correspondence and reports are posted on the MassDEP Northeast Region website at:  Please send your questions, comments and suggestions to:

Superior Court – Status Conference Recently Held

The Superior Court held a status conference with New Ventures and the Commonwealth on Friday, September 18, 2015.  The Court continued to stay (keep on hold) the Contempt Complaint filed by the Attorney General’s Office on behalf of the Commonwealth and MassDEP.  The Court directed the parties to meet and negotiate to see if the issues can be resolved.

Following the Court Status Conference

At the Court’s direction, MassDEP and the AGO met with New Ventures (NV), its counsel, Blue Granite (NV’s landfill gas and flare consultant) and SITEC (NV’s Engineer of Record for the Landfill).  As a result of the meeting, a plan for moving forward was developed, including the following items.  We anticipate that Blue Granite will soon conduct a landfill gas balancing and tuning exercise, with MassDEP staff in attendance.  SITEC will also be on-site soon, together with MassDEP staff, to investigate whether there are any identifiable landfill gas leaks on top of the landfill.  (Such leaks may occur due to settling, etc.).  Any leaks that are detected would then be scheduled for repair.  SITEC is also submitting a revised plan to repair the landfill’s southeast side slope, which has partially slumped due to issues in the sand drainage layer.  The parties also discussed NV’s consultants submitting certain additional information as a supplement to its closure certification.

NV reported that it has reestablished the Crow Lane Landfill Complaint Line (978-462-5240). MassDEP has confirmed that the line is currently in service. As noted previously, in addition to call the Complaint Line, real-time emails to the Crow Lane Information mailbox regarding any perceived odors or issues at or near the Landfill may allow us to deploy inspectors real-time, and are much appreciated. 

Moving Forward

MassDEP will issue an update prior to the SITEC visit to evaluate potential gas leaks, as the flare will need to be turned off for a period of about 48 hours prior to the assessment. 

MassDEP has been working with Mayor Holaday, Senator O’Connor-Ives and Representative Kelcourse concerning these recent Landfill issues.

MassDEP Oversight

MassDEP and/or personnel from MassDEP’s consultant (CBI/Shaw Environmental Inc.) continue to monitor the landfill on a regular basis.  MassDEP and/or Shaw personnel are scheduled to be at the Landfill several times per week. 

On behalf of MassDEP:
Susan Ruch
Acting Solid Waste Section Chief and
Deputy Regional Director

Crow Lane Yard WASTE Facility Extended Fall Hours; Bagged LEAF COLLECTION and Recycling Drop off Dates

Extended hours begin at the Newburyport Yard Waste Facility beginning Sunday, October 11.  The facility will be open from 10 am to 2 pm on Sundays until closing day on the first weekend of December, weather permitting. Regular hours of Tuesdays through Saturdays from 7:30 AM to 2:30 PM will also remain in effect.
Please be reminded that leaves, mulch and garden waste that are separated from shrub trimmings, tree twigs, branches and trunks up to 18" in diameter are accepted. Only wood chip material described above, recycled separately from compost material, is deposited unbagged on the right hand side as you enter. Compost material, either bagged or unbagged, is deposited on the left hand side.
No plastic pots, dirt-covered stumps, stones, formed wood, or trash are accepted. Residents are required to purchase a seasonal sticker to use the facility. Stickers are sold at the Crow Lane site with two proofs of residency or property ownership to residents in their own vehicles.  Fees are $20.00 for residents under 65 and $5 for residents 65 and over. 
Curbside bagged leaf collection will take place on regular trash days during the weeks of October 26, November 9, and November 30, Residents must place leaves in brown paper leaf bags or in marked barrels.    Bags must be curbside by 6.00AM and contain only leaves.  Bags containing branches, plants, dirt, rocks or trash will be left behind.
Additionally, Saturday, October 3 and Saturday, November 7 are our regular first Saturday of the month recycling days at the Crow Lane recycling facility for electronics, tires, oil paint, antifreeze, oil, Styrofoam, bikes, metals, mattresses, rechargeable batteries and florescent bulbs from 8am -12 pm.         
For additional information please contact the Recycling and Energy Office, at 978-499-0413 or via e-mail

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Amesbury – I-95 North----- Daytime Lane Closure on I-95 North and Exit 58B to Route 110 West -------- Week of September 20

In addition to typical lane closures, MassDOT will implement a daytime lane closure and intermittent ramp closure on I-95 North the week of September 20. The following closures will occur from 6:00 AM to 3:00 PM:
  • Monday, September 21 through Friday, September 25 – Single right lane closure on I-95 North from Route 113 to Route 110
  • Monday, September 21 and Thursday, September 24 – Intermittent closure of Exit 58B from I-95 North to Route 110 West to support paving operations
Exit 58B Detour Route:
  • Take Exit 60 for Toll Road/Route 286, turn right on Main Street/Route 286, then take the ramp to I-95 South to reach Route 110 West via Exit 58.
MassDOT encourages drivers to avoid the area and seek alternate routes to minimize delays. Those traveling through the area should expect delays and should reduce speed and use caution. 
For more information, questions or concerns about the work, please contact Daniel Fielding, MassDOT Legislative Liaison, at857-368-8959 or  
For more information about the project, visit the website at View progress photos on MassDOT’s Whittier Bridge Flickr Album.
The schedule for this major infrastructure project is weather dependent and subject to change without notice. 

DPS Street and Sidewalk Construction Update

The Department of Public Services (DPS) is responsible for roadway and sidewalk construction and repair. We are scheduled to perform roadway work and/or sidewalk work on all or a portion of the following streets during the week noted above:
  1. Dove Street (sidewalks)
  2. Green Street (Driveway and wheelchair ramp)
  3. Munroe Street (sidewalks)
  4. North Atkinson Street (sidewalks)
  5. Purchase St #22 (sidewalks)
  6. Water Street - Bromfield St to Marlboro St (National Grid Project)
Parking may be restricted on all or a portion of these streets; please adhere to any posted no parking restrictions. The roadway or sidewalk may also be closed to users during the construction period.  We are sorry for any inconveniences and appreciate your understanding while we improve our city.
This schedule may change due to weather conditions, contractor delays or circumstances beyond our control. We will make every effort to adhere to this schedule and will provide any updates to the website as soon as possible.
If you have any question or concerns, please feel free to contact DPS at 978-465-4464 ext. 1701 or Our construction supervisor, Joe MacKay will also be available on the street during certain times of the construction. Feel free to ask anyone working on the project to direct you to Joe if you have any questions.

Police to Host National Drug Take Back Day

The Newburyport Police Department, in collaboration with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), will participate in National Drug Take Back Day later this month.
Residents are encouraged to visit the police station, 4 Green St., on Saturday, Sept. 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to dispose of their unused, unwanted or expired prescription drugs. The event is free and anonymous. The DEA will accept pills and patches, but cannot take liquids, needles or sharps.
The initiative addresses the vital public health issue of removing easily accessible and unused prescriptions from people's houses. Studies have shown that the majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including the home medicine cabinet. Residents are advised to avoid disposing unused medications by flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the garbage, as these methods have potential safety and health risks.
Last September, Americans turned in 309 tons (over 617,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at nearly 5,500 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,000 of its state and municipal law enforcement partners. Since the first Take Back event, the DEA and police agencies have taken in over 4.8 million pounds of drugs.
For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the Sept. 26 Drug Take Back Day, visit the DEA Office of Diversion Control site or contact the Newburyport Police Department at 978-462-4411.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Beginning 9/21 - Route 110 On-Ramp to I-95 North Closed for 5 Weeks

MassDOT will close the Route 110 on-ramp to I-95 North in Amesbury beginning on Monday, September 21 for approximately five weeks. The 24-hour-a-day/7-day-a-week closure is necessary to demolish and reconstruct the on-ramp to I-95 North over the abandoned railroad just north of Route 110. The detour route for Route 110 east and westbound traffic destined for I-95 North is as follows:
Route 110 East to I-95 North Detour:
  • Continue past the on-ramp and take the first left onto Rabbit Road, continue straight across Route 286 onto Main Street, turn left onto Toll Road, then take a right onto the I-95 North on-ramp.
Route 110 West to I-95 North Detour:
  • Turn right onto Rabbit Road before the on-ramp, continue straight across Route 286 onto Main Street, turn left onto Toll Road, then take a right onto the I-95 North on-ramp.
Signage will be in place indicating the detour route. MassDOT encourages drivers to avoid the area and seek alternate routes to minimize delays. Those traveling through the area should expect delays and should reduce speed and use caution. 
For more information, questions or concerns about the work, please contact Daniel Fielding, MassDOT Legislative Liaison, at857-368-8959 or  
For more information about the project, visit the website at View progress photos on MassDOT’s Whittier Bridge Flickr Album.

Title VI Notice of Nondiscrimination: MassDOT complies with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and related federal and state statutes and regulations. It is the policy of MassDOT to ensure that no person or group of persons shall on the grounds of Title VI protected categories, including race, color, national origin, or under additional federal and state protected categories including sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, religion, creed, ancestry, veteran's status (including Vietnam-era veterans), or background, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity administered by MassDOT. To request additional information about this commitment, or to file a complaint under Title VI or a related nondiscrimination provision, please contact MassDOT's Title VI Specialist by phone at (857) 368-8580, TTY at (857) 368-8580, fax (857) 368-0602 or by e-mail

If information is needed in another language, please contact the MassDOT Title VI Specialist by phone at (857) 368-8580

CVS Update

75, 79, 79R Storey Avenue

Sign Variance Provide a free-standing sign for the new CVS Pharmacy and allow more than one building-mounted sign on Storey Ave. façade

This hearing was continued from the 8/11/15 meeting. Attorney Jeff Roelofs, 30 Green Street, Newburyport presented on behalf of the applicants. The applicants were asked to consider other options for the building mounted CVS Pharmacy and Minute Clinic signs. Two options were presented; Option A showed the CVS and Minute Clinic sign stacked on the right side of the building and Option B showed the signs stacked on the left side. If Option B were selected, the sign would not serve as a way finder for the entrance. If Option A were selected, the sign would not serve as a way finder for the clinic inside the store and the lettering would appear smaller and crowded. An option not shown, moving the Minute Clinic sign to the Low Street façade would be screened by plantings and not fully visible. Attorney Roelofs stressed that CVS and Minute Clinic are separate businesses and Minute Clinic is not offered in all CVS stores. The applicants still prefer the separation of the signs on the Storey Avenue façade noting that they are less cluttered, modest in size, and have been approved by the Planning Board. The signage would not adversely affect neighbors or be detrimental to the public good. The freestanding sign was also modified slightly at the suggestion of the board and now incorporated a stone base and altered topper. Comparisons of neighboring signs versus building length were passed out to the Board.

Chair Ramsdell opened the hearing to public comment.

 In Favor:
 Jim McCarthy, 17 Russia Street Mr. McCarthy was in favor of allowing the separation of signs. They are not cluttered and would not detract from the neighborhood.

In Opposition: None

Questions from the Board regarding Public Hearing #1: Mr. LaBay appreciated the photos, additional info, and background research, but asked if they were comparing apples and oranges. Attorney Roelofs explained that the businesses co-exist but are completely separate. Mr. LaBay brought up that the applicants stated Minute Clinic is a service provided at 1% or less of CVS stores, yet had information from the CVS website stating other statistics. Attorney Roelofs explained that the point of that statistic was Minute Clinic is not customarily in CVS stores. Mr. LaBay also brought up that CVS and Minute Clinic fall under the ‘CVS Health’ brand. Attorney Roelofs explained that the business is affiliated, as the lending services at the Institution for Savings are.

Deliberations: Mr. LaBay commented that the freestanding sign is nice. As a marketing professional, he would see it logical to have the signs together and not opposite ends of the building. Mr. Ciampitti understood that Minute Clinics are not in every store. He understood the separation of signage, but thought it awkward.

Mr. Pennington agreed the freestanding sign is fine. He was uncomfortable with two buildingmounted signs, but leaning toward approval. Waiving a sign on the Low Street side could get him toward approval.

Mr. Goulet also agreed with the freestanding sign. He could get comfortable with the buildingmounted sign separation with the way finder explanation.

Attorney Roelofs stated that the applicant would waive right for a building-mounted sign on Low Street so long as there were two on Storey Avenue.

Motion to approve application 2015-040 as updated with condition that so long as there are two building mounted signs on Storey Avenue, there should be no sign on Low Street made by Mr. Pennington, seconded by Mr. Goulet.

The motion passed.
Votes Cast: Ed Ramsdell– approve
Robert Ciampitti – approve
Duncan LaBay – no
Jamie Pennington – approve
Richard Goulet – approve
Libby McGee – absent
Renee Bourdeau – absent