Derek Michalski and the staff of the Ridgewood blog
UPPER SADDLE RIVER NJ , on June 13, 2019 another storm water runoff pollution violation observed in the corridor of Pleasant Brook in USR. NJDEP newest report# 19-06-13-0858-36 taken by operator 91. Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi, Councilwoman Janet Ariemma and US Congressional candidate Frank Palotta and current mayor of Mahwah John Roth were ALL apprised about this latest development.
Upper Saddle River NJ, over the last year the Ridgewood blog has reported on the run off from the Toll Brothers owned Apple Ridge site . We have run post after post and noticed at the end of the day no one , not even the NJDEP was willing to do anything about it what so ever .
Today we may have found out why . Going back over 3 decades starting with Jim “tax toilet paper” Florio ,Boswell Engineering the engineering firm on the Apple Ridge project has flooded New Jersey politicians with donation after donation. Greasing the wheels of the political process or paying for protection Boswell Engineering has given generously to both side of the isle .
Upper Saddle River NJ, The DEP continues to delay adoption of new rules upgrading 749 miles of waterways to Category One streams. They have extended the public comment period another month to June 3, providing more time for opponents to organize their fight against the proposal. The C1 designation offers the highest level of protection for water quality.
This is an environmental debacle especially for a community of our size. I am worried about the future health and safety of all the homeowners living by this Toll Brothers construction project ,and I 100% agree that the EPA and FBI should continue to delve into this mess. As a long-time resident and taxpayer about to see my neighborhood go down the tubes, I demand immediate and positive action from Toll Brothers and our town’s leadership!
Pictured: Goose laying eggs on Palm Sunday in the middle of USR pond filled over the weekend by Toll Brothers with heavy construction mud.
by Derek Michalski
Upper Saddle River NJ, Blue Laws violated again by Toll Brothers in Bergen County. Why Toll Brother have no respect for our environment is obviously clear to anyone who followed the story of Apple Ridge a/k/a Preserve? But why Toll Brothers brakes social norm, respect for our believes and our religion is beyond comprehension. Perhaps if Satanism was allowed on the premises of Toll Brothers Bergen Sheriff and Jim Tedesco would act but because Blue Laws are broken almost every other Sunday nobody gives a damn…………..very sad state of Bergen County we are entering, very sad indeed.
Upper Saddle River NJ, Strong winds in Upper Saddle River and lack of dust control by Toll Brothers created another environmental violation: dust pollution. Plume of dust covered on Wednesday April 3, 2019 neighboring homes in the vicinity of Apple Ridge former golf course a/k/a “Preserve”. USRPD Police officer Hausch witnessed with me gusts of wind blowing construction dust into my car, his car and all over the neighborhood. At the scene I run also into USR Borough Director James Dougherty who stated that he was only the “middle man” and it wasn’t up to him but up to Boswell to supervise the situation. When I asked him why there were no dust control trucks on this 100 plus acres of desert (btw required by law) he just said “have a nice day” and left the construction scene.
Upper Saddle River NJ, Toll Brothers and it’s apologists exposed in this shocking 5 minutes interview with Jeff Tittel – NJ Sierra Club Director. Jeff Tittel was investigating stormwater pollution violations companies like Toll Brothers had been committing in the state of New Jersey for over two decades. Last Friday he caught Toll Brothers red handed committing another stormwater violation live! Will Congressman Josh Gottheimer put stop to this environmental tragedy? Time will tell. His district Catherine Best contacted me and requested additional documentation which I provided.
Derek Michalski GreenUSR, Founder and Volunteer – (Upper & Saddle River, Ramapo and Pascack Valley Communities)
Upper Saddle River NJ, This will be my last public plea to you Honorable Ladies: Mayor Joanne Minichetti, Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi and Assemblywoman Lisa Swain on the subject of Pleasant Brook stormwater pollution.
Considering the perpetual environmental devastation that besets our community, please do the right thing and order Toll Brothers to honor the EPA settlement that Toll Brothers signed back in 2012. Since you and only you have the power to issue a Stop Work Order concerning construction at this work site to arrest further release of environmental toxins, please do so in order to prevent Toll Brothers from violating stormwater regulations. Assemblywoman Holly Schepisi has been receiving extensive documentation over the course of the past year regarding this environmental condition and, this adverse environmental condition will go unabated if this Stop Work Order is not honored.
Upper Saddle River NJ, PLEASANT BROOK made the news again today. Scott Fallon from The Record published photo of Pleasant Brook taken by GreenUSR community volunteer Derek Michalski. Pleasant Brook is under constant assault by giant construction company Toll Brothers that decided to dewater 100 plus acres of construction desert in the middle of the town by pumping dirty muddy water called “colloidal clay” directly into the brook that divides 19 Meadowbrook Rd and 1 Lake Street in Upper Saddle River. These two mega construction projects are being developed by Toll Brothers. Between those two sites 150 acres of land will be dewater over the course of next 2-5 years. According to renowned environmental lawyer and ground water pollution expert from Boston, Matt Pawa who visited the area last month approximately 200 families in the corridor of Pleasant Brook are at potential health risk.
“Unfortunately it’s much easier to talk about grandiose ideas like saving oceans, planet earth, etc. But when it comes to local issues most people are paralyzed from fear and don’t want to get involved or/and offend their local (and friendly) politicians who they see on daily basis. Other aspect of it is apathy and ignorance. But arsenic and lead in our drinking water is not something we should take lightly. Town-wide well water testing should follow in my humble opinion. If Suez can pay for lead testing I am sure Toll Brothers can afford arsenic testing as well. Between 19 Meadowbrook Road and 1 Lake Street projects (both include Pleasant Brook) Toll Brothers will gross close to half a billion of dollars in gross real estate sales if not more. There should be provisions for water testing in such enormous construction projects in the middle of small town that relied on well water for decades. Why destroy something others had been preserving for us generations? When I moved to Upper Saddle River in 2006 they called it “bucolic community” and now we have over 150 acres of pure desert in the middle of the town. Very sad what’s becoming of this lovely community.”