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June 28, 2004

Contact: Fred Mumford
(609) 984-1795

Operation and Maintenance Work Continues at Combe Fill North Landfill

(04/73) TRENTON -- Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Bradley M. Campbell today announced removal of the Combe Fill North Landfill in Mount Olive, Morris County from the National Priorities List of Superfund sites in New Jersey.

"The good news is that removing this landfill from the Superfund list closes a final chapter on a hazardous waste legacy that the Mt. Olive community has lived with for many years," said Commissioner Campbell. "To continue progress at similar sites across New Jersey, we need leadership at the federal level to reinstate a stable source of funding for the Superfund program that now puts the burden on taxpayers not polluters to pay for cleanups."

In 1991, DEP completed remedial work at the landfill, including installation of a clay cap, landfill gas venting system and perimeter fencing around the site. In 2000, DEP installed drainage channels on the cap to alleviate storm water ponding caused by landfill settlement.

Since 1991, DEP has conducted long-term monitoring of the ground water around the landfill. In 2001, a group of potentially responsible parties entered into an administrative consent order with DEP to fund the ground water monitoring and other routine maintenance of the landfill.

Cleanup costs for past work at the site include $15,439,000 in federal funds from the Superfund Trust and $2,822,000 in state funds. DEP and the Department of Law and Public Safety settled with the potentially responsible parties for $4,650,000 to pay the state for both its past remedial costs and future expenditures for maintenance activities at the site. The settlement required an initial payment of $2,676,180 for past costs and 21 annual payments of $98,691 to cover future costs.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approved removal of the site from the Superfund list on June 2, 2004.

Combe Fill North Landfill occupies 65 acres of a 102-acre property located on Gold Mine Road predominantly surrounded by commercial properties. The site operated as a sanitary municipal landfill from 1966 to 1978, accepting municipal and industrial waste and small amounts of dry sewage sludge. Combe Fill Corporation purchased the landfill in 1978. The following year ground water contamination was found beneath the site that included volatile organic compounds.

The landfill was not properly closed in 1981 due the bankruptcy of Combe Fill Corporation. DEP subsequently cited the corporation for several violations, including improper landfill cover that resulted in windblown debris and inadequate leachate control. The Combe Fill North Landfill was added to the National Priorities List of Superfund sites in 1983.



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