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Riverkeeper Takes Action to Combat Illegal Discharge of Raw Sewage in Beacon and Goshen, New York

Beacon Sewage 3-30-10 015

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact:

Tina Posterli, 914-478-4501 x 239, tposterli@riverkeeper.org

Riverkeeper Takes Action to Combat Illegal Discharge of Raw Sewage in Beacon and Goshen, New York

Files Notices of Intent to Sue alleging violations of the Federal Clean Water Act

Tarrytown, NY – April 21, 2010 – Riverkeeper has filed two Notices of Intent to Sue for Clean Water Act (CWA) violations against the City of Beacon, New York and Village of Goshen, New York. These actions are part of Riverkeeper’s broader campaign to protect water quality in the Hudson River and its tributaries.

In Beacon, Riverkeeper has observed large amounts of raw sewage flowing into a picturesque section of the Fishkill Creek, where local residents come to recreate. In the Village of Goshen, raw sewage bubbles out of manholes, overflowing through streets and next to a public trail and into the Rio Grande, a tributary of the Wallkill and Hudson Rivers.

“These sewage overflows are a huge threat to water quality and quality of life for local residents,” said Joshua Verleun, Riverkeeper Staff Attorney & Chief Investigator. “Spring rain and aging infrastructure are not an excuse to break the law.”

In the City of Beacon, the sewage discharge comes from a manhole atop a large concrete juncture between two sewage pipes. Riverkeeper has documented a torrent of raw sewage cascading out of the structure and into the Fishkill Creek and raw sewage bubbling through the slats of the public walkway that runs above it. The discharge from this structure was visibly discolored and left behind macerated toilet paper, sewage solids, and other waste on the walkway and the surrounding shoreline of the Fishkill Creek.

In the Village of Goshen, sewage bubbles up through manholes on West Street and St. John Street running across these streets into a nearby stormwater drain and into the Rio Grande. These overflows leave behind a trail of macerated toilet paper, sewage solids, and other waste. Along the Heritage trail in the Town of Goshen, manholes that are part of the Village sanitary sewer also show the telltale signs of sewage overflows with macerated toilet paper, and other sewage solids littering the manhole covers and banks of the Rio Grande.

“Through these actions, Riverkeeper seeks to spur the City of Beacon and Village of Goshen to set out definitive plans to address these illegal discharges and invest the resources over time to ensure that local waterways and public spaces are protected from the impact of raw sewage,” said Verleun.

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