DEC returns to Hi-Way Oil site

JOHNSTOWN — The state Department of Environmental Conservation is back at the city’s former Hi-Way Oil Inc. site, removing contaminated soil.

City Engineer Christopher Vose reported to the Common Council Monday night that the DEC was expected to come back to the site. He said there may be some traffic obstruction with associated work. Crews could be seen this week removing soil.

“They do plan to do everything off the streets,” Vose said.

A DEC contractor in April dug up underground tanks at the 237 N. Perry St. site. National Pipe and Plastics did the work on behalf of DEC. The city Department of Public Works and the Fulton County Demolition Team on May 1 removed the former Hi-Way oil building. Now, the DEC is addressing the soil situation.

In fall 2016, the city acquired the former gas station for delinquent taxes. The city has an agreement that involved the DEC removing tanks, in conjunction with the New York Environmental Protection and Spill Fund. In exchange for this service, the city has agreed that when the property is sold, the city will pay the fund 50 percent of the sale.

Elsewhere in his report, Vose said city streets are being readied for paving and repairs.

“Our main focus in the past month and a half is getting all our streets ready,” he said.

In other city reports:

∫ Diedrie Roemer, executive director of the Johnstown Senior Citizens Center, reported her facility conducted a covered dish supper in June. She said the center’s 50 Plus Club takes a break from some activities in July and August.

She thanked the city Fire Department, which did in-service training with staff and conducted a fire drill. She also thanked the city Department of Public Works for work on center grounds.

Roemer said the center will hold a trip planning meeting for 2019 trips on Thursday.

The 50 Plus Club will conduct a take-out chicken barbecue event Aug. 10 at Whitey’s on North Perry Street. Tickets are $10 and are available at the center.

Lifeline screenings will conducted Aug. 14 at the center.

A Saratoga track day trip is set for Aug. 16.

∫ City Treasurer Michael Gifford said his office sent out a 2017 state financial report. He said it was part of three different financial statements attached to a required city filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

∫ Erica Wing, director of the Johnstown Public Library, was not in attendance. However, she indicated on Wednesday: “Our Summer Reading Program is in full swing. We’re seeing lots of people having a good time.”

∫ Third Ward Councilwoman Helen Martin reported basic maintenance is being done at the Gloversville-Johnstown Wastewater Treatment Facility. An in-house project was done to remove grit from the sewer plant’s primary digester, she said.

Fourth Ward Councilman Timothy Cellary said the city Water Board recently heard a presentation on a spillway project.

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at [email protected]

By Kerry Minor

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