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Stump grinding won’t go on at yard

The Smithtown Town Board voted 5-0 on Friday,

The Smithtown Town Board voted 5-0 on Friday, March 7, 2014, to move a storm-debris grinding operation from the Montclair Avenue highway yard after neighbors complained about the noise. This is Smithtown Town Hall. Credit: Erin Geismar

Smithtown Town Board members unanimously approved a bid that relocates the grinding of tree stumps and debris from the Montclair Avenue highway yard after neighbors complained of dust and noise.

The board voted 5-0 to rescind a $210,000 bid awarded in December 2013 to All Island Excavating Corp. to grind the material at the St. James highway yard. In its place, the board approved All Island’s $385,000 bid to transport and dispose of the material off-site.

Smithtown Supervisor Patrick Vecchio said he called the special meeting on Friday, March 7 after receiving complaints from residents about excessive grinding noise.

Vecchio has said the town will cover the $175,000 increase with reserve funds, which the board unanimously voted to give the town comptroller authority to transfer.

Robert DeMoustes, 65, lives on Montclair Avenue and has complained about the noise and dust.

“On behalf of the residents of Montclair Avenue, we would greatly like to thank you for your appreciation in this matter, and we hope that we can move forward in the future with such kind of resolve,” he told the board at the Friday meeting.

Vecchio said Smithtown entered into a consent decree with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation to remove excess debris from superstorm Sandy or face a $450,000 fine.

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