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Town: No waste-processing violations seen at contractor's

The Smithtown Town Board voted unanimously to purchase

The Smithtown Town Board voted unanimously to purchase two properties for $240,000 that can be used for transfer of density flow rights. (Feb. 20, 2012) Credit: Erin Geismar

A Kings Park concrete contractor appears to be complying with a court order to quit collecting solid waste, Smithtown officials said, after the town launched round-the-clock surveillance of the company last week.

Supervisor Patrick Vecchio on Thursday ordered town public safety officers to monitor KPE II 24 hours a day after neighbors reported seeing trucks hauling waste to the company's site on Old Northport Road.

Under a temporary restraining order issued March 4 in State Supreme Court in Riverhead, the company was barred from storing trucks and processing waste.

After monitoring began Friday morning, an attorney for KPE II told town officials the firm would remove trucks from the site and the vehicles would not return unless the court order is lifted, town attorney John Zollo said.

Officers have not reported seeing violations since surveillance began, public safety director John Valentine said. "I think we're in pretty good shape," he said. "We'll keep our monitoring there until we're told otherwise."

An attorney for KPE did not return a call seeking comment.

Kings Park resident Larry Shaw welcomed the apparent stoppage. "As far as I know, KPE II has been silent since the 24-hour surveillance was put in place," said Shaw, a member of a community group concerned about industrial businesses that they say cause dust and noise from trucks and rock-crushing equipment. "It's a miracle, because [neighbors] finally have some peace and quiet."

The temporary restraining order bars KPE from operating a solid waste facility, storing commercial vehicles and heavy industrial equipment, and running a concrete aggregate processing center. The order had been requested by Smithtown officials and residents, who said the company was violating town zoning laws.

KPE attorneys had argued that their business was grandfathered because other companies had used the site before town zoning laws were enacted. The town and KPE are due in State Supreme Court in Riverhead on April 4 for a hearing on the alleged zoning infractions.

Zollo said he would consider seeking a contempt-of-court citation if KPE violated the restraining order. "If things change, we'll go right to court with a contempt proceeding," he said.

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