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Funding may be in the works for cleanup of rest of Sackets Harbor oil site

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SACKETS HARBOR — Money could be on the way to help the village Local Development Corp. clear a couple of thousand yards of contaminated soil on the south side of the former Augsbury oil site on Ambrose Street.

Donald L. DiMonda, the LDC’s president, said he had recent conversations with the state Department of Environmental Conservation that gave him the impression that as much as $400,000 could be made available to help with the work, with the department paying for 90 percent of the cost.

“We’re very encouraged by this news,” Mr. DiMonda said. “We’re hopeful we’ll be able to access it, and bring this to completion.”

The payment split being considered between the DEC and LDC would be the same as when the smaller north side of the site was cleaned.

About 3,500 cubic yards of soil on the south side is contaminated by petroleum. Mr. DiMonda said that if all goes according to plan, work at the site would start next spring.

The LDC president said that consultants advised him it could be feasible to extract the contaminated soil from the site within the $400,000 funding level. Mr. DiMonda said the extraction route may be more preferable to soil rotation methods, which could take longer to complete.

“If that money is enough to cover trucking it out, then I’m guessing the board would be more interested in using the removal process so it’s done that much faster,” Mr. DiMonda said.

Last year, crews from the village and town of Hounsfield helped clear soil from the north side of the site, and that portion of the site was given DEC approval this spring.

The state agency said in April that no further remedial work was necessary at the 1,200-yard northern portion of the Ambrose Street site.

In late 2012, village and town crews worked to excavate about 2,400 tons of soil from the property.

Mr. DiMonda estimated cleaning work at the north side of the site, completed in early January, cost about $300,000.

The north side cleaning work followed the 2009 clearance of about 1,500 tons of contaminated soil and a 1,000-gallon underground storage tank.

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