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Lower Mt. Bethel Twp. gives conditional approval to stump grinding operation

By Joe McDonald, WFMZ.com Reporter, news@wfmz.com
Published On: Aug 06 2013 12:29:25 PM CDT
Updated On: Aug 07 2013 08:01:08 AM CDT
LOWER MOUNT BETHEL TWP., Pa. -

The new owner of a former stump grinder site on Gravel Hill won conditional approval Monday night from township supervisors, in another of a series of steps Gravel Hill Enterprises needs before it can start operations.

Even with the green light from the township, Gravel Hill must wait for approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, which has placed a cleanup order on the property.

The cleanup order stems from the way the previous owner of the former Stine farm, Clayton Stine Jr., operated his stump recycling operation.

The stumps piled up so high, they were more than Stine could handle. Then things got even worse when they caught fire.

One of the new company’s principals, Gerald DiDomenico of Salem, N.Y., who spoke publicly at the supervisor’s meeting but later refused to identify himself to a reporter, told the supervisors the DEP “is very, very happy” with his efforts to clean up the site.

The supervisors later discussed at length concerns they have about DiDomenico’s offer to pay the township a $2.50 “tipping fee” for each tractor trailer load of material trucked in or out of the property, with the guarantee there would be no more than a maximum of 25 loads a day and a maximum of 125 a week.

Township Engineer Tim Edinger said DiDomenico’s offer was “a little light to say the least.”

Edinger said the township should consider asking double or triple that amount “and see where he goes.”