A politically connected, ultra-wealthy developer is using New Jersey hard-earned tax dollars to construct a huge housing development atop a 425-acre radioactive toxic waste site on the Raritan River in Sayreville, New Jersey.
Please tell your New Jersey elected officials to withdraw this absurd waste of scarce tax dollars, and call for an immediate investigation into potential penalties surrounding this fraudulent funding through New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, New Jersey Economic Development Authority and State Attorney General. With schools, hospitals and roads and bridges falling apart due to difficult economic times, it would be ridiculous to allow – and encourage – a developer to get away with misusing funds and misleading New Jersey on a multi-million dollarwaste of taxpayer dollars that the developer was never eligible to receive.
Act now to put an end to this fraudulent spending!
The developer was falsely granted a state designated Brownfield Development Area (BDA) for the 425-acre Sayreville Waterfront. This area called the “Sayreville Waterfront BDA” includes two Superfund Sites in the application along with the National Lead site. The memorandum of understanding signed on July 7, 2011 by Sayreville and the state of New Jersey clearly documents this information.
After careful review, it was uncovered that the “Sayreville Waterfront BDA” clearly does not qualify for New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) BDA status and should be revoked immediately. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), federal Superfund Sites are not eligible for Brownfields designation or funding. That leaves only the National Lead within the Sayreville Waterfront BDA.
Yet, according to the NJDEP Statute for Guidelines (58:10B-25.1), “the Department shall require that a Brownfield Development Area includes at least two Brownfields sites within a contiguous area.”
Consequently, the Sayreville Waterfront BDA does not qualify for a BDA, and the $20 million in funding already granted to the developer must be retracted and allocated towards legitimate BDA sites in blighted urban communities that are highly dependent on funding remediation in order to revitalize our crumbling urban communities.
Even more importantly, a recent report from the state revealed that funding for our urban Brownfields cleanups has dried up and more funds are desperately needed to continue remediation and revitalization in environmental justice areas like Camden and Newark. To add to that, a recent investigative story uncovered that the NJDEP failed to track the $281 million dollars spent on Brownfields funding used to clean polluted properties in New Jersey. This site clearly has a responsible party to fund the cleanup, and is trying to subsidize their costs by using NJDEP's taxpayer slush fund to pay for it. This is absolutely unacceptable to the hard-working taxpayers of New Jersey.
Please immediately withdraw this fraudulent and costly funding currently provided through NJDEP, New Jersey Economic Development Authority and the State Attorney General and launch an investigation into the potential penalties - regulatory, financial, or legal - that the State of New Jersey can pursue on this fraudulent use of funding.
Thank you in advance for your timely assistance on this important issue.