Tag Archives: asbestos

Owner of Nestle building admits to illegally removing asbestos

by Nicole Reitz

Edward Palmer, owner of Carbonsted, LCC, pled guilty in federal court to a felony violation of the Clean Air Act.

Palmer is from Phoenix and the owner of the former Nestle Plant. He admitted recently that he engaged in illegal asbestos removal. The asbestos was in a building that he owned along fourth street, not Building 95, the most recent building torn down.

Federal prosecutors say the plant contained pipes with more than 2,000 feet of friable asbestos insulation.

Fulton Mayor Ron Woodward said that Palmer was getting rid of what he calls “jumbos,” or steel tanks that Nestle used to circulate steam. The pipes leading to the tanks had asbestos on them.

“He had employees inside the building working for him, but told me that he had to let them go,” said Woodward. “Those workers then blew him in to the Department of Labor for improperly exposing them to asbestos.”

To best handle asbestos, the area needs to be incapsulated and sealed off so that no material becomes airborne.

Federal prosecutors say that Palmer directed his unlicensed workers to perform asbestos abatement without first wetting the asbestos and keeping it wet. They also claim that Palmer also failed to dispose off the asbestos at a state-approved landfill.

“Asbestos is in a lot of those older buildings, in brick insulation, floor titles and caulk for windows,” said Woodward. “He should have had a survey and a lab test done. We take those steps when the city tears down a house.”

Woodward said that there is no public health concern for residents who live near the former Nestle Building. The only people at risk are the unlicensed workers that were in the building at the time of asbestos removal.

To read the rest of the article, pick up a copy of The Valley News. You can subscribe by calling 598-6397 or click on the link on our home page.

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DSS asbestos abatement project debated once again

asbestosby Carol Thompson

How much is too much?

That was the question that sparked a lengthy debate during Thursday’s meeting of the Oswego County Legislature.

In the end, legislators approved spending up to $1,566,341 for asbestos abatement and building renovations at the county’s Department of Social Services (DSS), located in Mexico.

The vote was not unanimous as eight legislators opposed spending tax dollars on items that are not considered a necessity in completing the asbestos abatement.

Legislator Jake Mulcahey asked if the project could be done for less money, noting that the legislature is looking to cut $3 million from the preliminary 2013 budget to avoid a property tax increase.

Mulcahey said he is very concerned about the safety of the employees, however, noted that the scope of the project has grown and may continue to grow.

Majority Leader Jack Proud said the legislature needed to take into consideration the age of the building.

“We are looking at a 30-year-old building, to which no major improvements have been made over the course of those years,” he said.

The state may pay up to 75 percent of the project cost, leaving local tax dollars to pay nearly $400,000.

As Proud reminded his colleagues that the state will pay up to 75 percent, Malone reminded him that local residents pay state taxes as well.

Minority Leader Mike Kunzwiler said he appreciates the urgency but cautioned that the county is currently in hard financial times.

He said that the county does need to address the asbestos, however, like other legislators, Kunzwiler questioned the need for the additional expenses, including new carpeting and painting.

The county originally authorized $30,000 for the asbestos testing and later approved an additional $70,000 for an abatement plan.

Legislator Shawn Doyle said that the project is a necessary evil that needs to be done.

To read the rest of the story, pick up the latest copy of The Valley News. You may also subscribe to the paper by calling 598-6397

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Oswego County DSS building update to be held today

by Carol Thompson

When the Oswego County Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee meets today, an update will be presented in regard to the Department of Socials Services building.

Last week, county officials advised the public that low levels of asbestos have been found in ceiling tiles in the older section of the DSS building.

They added that the tiles pose no health threat unless they are damaged or moved.

The county contracted with an environmental testing firm to conduct air quality monitoring and test ceiling tiles for asbestos at the DSS building based upon an employee’s concern.

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