Councilwoman, Connie Kepert

January 18, 2012

NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
Commissioner Joe Martens

625 Broadway

Albany, NY 12207

Re: The Appeal of Long Island Compost/Great Gardens located in Yaphank, New York Variance Repeal for Part 360-11.3 (a) (3) of the NYS Solid Waste Regulations Permit number 1-4722-03647/00001

Facility ID-52-T-114

Dear Commissioner Martens:

I would like to express my sincere gratitude for the appropriate action taken by the DEC on October 26th, 2011 to remove the variance from Great Gardens LLC, located at 445 Horseblock Road, Yaphank, which has enabled them to operate without being enclosed. There is no doubt that Great Gardens has failed to mitigate their off-site dust and odor, thus violating the Special Condition #16 of their variance, which states;

“The Permittee is granted a variance from the requirement of 6 NYCRR Part 360-11.3(a)(3) and is authorized to accept and process yard waste without an enclosed structure of covered area. However, should nuisance condition(s) develop, the Department reserves all rights to rescind this variance and require that all operations at this facility be conducted within an enclosed structure or covered area.”

As a key department in serving justice for the affected communities, I ask that your department fight back the Great Garden’s motion to appeal the decision to remove the variance. Since the action to remove the variance, the Town of Brookhaven’s Fire Marshalls have written Fire Code violation summonses due to pile heights exceeding legal limits and lack of fire breaks in the piles. I have also driven past the site on several occasions and personally experienced the offensive and potent odors. Despite the action taken by the DEC to remove their variance, Great Gardens continues to disregard the law and violate the trust of their neighbors.

We have the law on our side and I, along with the community, stand with the DEC as you proceed toward justice for the residents and business owners of the communities surrounding Great Gardens.

I look forward to hearing from you regarding this pressing issue and if you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at 631-451-6968.


Councilwoman Connie Kepert
Council District #4
Town of Brookhaven

NYSDEC Region 1 Director Peter Scully
NYS Senator Lee Zeldin
NYS Senator Ken LaValle
NYS Assemblyman Dean Murray
NYS Assemblyman Robert Sweeney
NYS Assemblyman Steve Englebright
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone
Suffolk County Presiding Officer William Lindsay
Suffolk County Legislator, Kate Browning
Suffolk County Legislator Rob Calarco
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Mark Lesko
The Brookhaven Community Coalition

Councilwoman Connie Kepert

One Independence Hill • Farmingville • NY 11738 • Phone (631) 451-6968 • Fax (631) 451-6447