Local leaders urge state to regulate mulch businesses
The town of Brookhaven is asking the state to help crack down on what they call an illegal mulching facility.
Neighbors to Swezey Farm Nursery say the smell is overpowering in the summertime, and can only be produced by a mulching operation.
Assemblyman Dean Murray (R - District 3) says mulching facilities have been popping up all over Long Island. He says the long and involved cleanup from Superstorm Sandy interrupted efforts to tighten regulations on mulching businesses.
Murray says state regulations on mulching facilities are insufficient and wants the state Department of Environmental Conservation to do something about it.
"There's a loophole where there's no one regulating these [mulch facilities]," Murray said. "It slips right in between the DEC and the local level."
News 12 was on the scene when the town raided the property for allegedly operating a business on property zoned for residential use. The raid was a result of complaints from surrounding neighbors who are upset about large mounds of mulch in plain view from their backyards.
Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine says Swezey Farm Nursery was ticketed for the incident. The town has been fighting the property owner in court for nearly two years.
News 12 went to Swezey Farm Nursery Monday, but was quickly asked to leave.