[Adopted 7-28-2014 by L.L. No. 3-2014]
This article shall be known as the "Biosolids Management Law of the Town of Wheatfield."
The Town of Wheatfield finds that the processing, collection, handling, storage, treatment, land application and/or disposal of biosolids, digestate and other waste materials generated by the treatment of municipal wastewater, which contain human waste and other impurities, pose a significant health risk to the residents of the Town and may adversely impact the surrounding environment. The potential contamination of groundwater, surface water and soil, as well as the potential for air pollution, resulting from such activities poses an unreasonable risk to town residents, public health and the environment.
The Town Board intends by this article to:
Prohibit the construction and operation of new anaerobic digestion facilities, land application facilities and storage facilities within the Town of Wheatfield in order to promote a clean, wholesome and attractive environment for the community.
Reduce the risk of pollution and other harmful effects, to the maximum extent possible, from existing anaerobic digestion facilities, land application facilities and storage facilities by restricting the scope and size of such activities.
Ensure that accurate, current information about solid waste disposal operations within the Town is available to public officials and residents.
Protect the residents of the Town from the harmful effects of biosolids, including:
Exercise the Town's police powers under the Municipal Home Rule Law and § 130(1)(6), (E) and § 136 of the Town law for the physical and mental well-being and safety of its inhabitants and to restrict biosolids treatment facilities, land application facilities. and waste disposal operations pursuant to the authority of § 27-0711 of the Environmental Conservation Law which authorizes municipalities to impose controls on waste disposal operations that are more strict than state law requires.
Unless indicated herein or the context otherwise requires, the terms used in this article shall have the same meaning as those defined in Article 27 of the New York Environmental Conservation Law and the regulations promulgated thereunder.
The following terms shall have the meanings indicated herein:
- ANAEROBIC DIGESTION
- The biochemical decomposition of organic matter into methane and carbon dioxide (biogas) by microorganisms in the absence of air.
- ANAEROBIC DIGESTION FACILITY
- Any facility which accepts, treats or processes wastewater treatment sludges, biosolids, manure, food waste, fats, oils. greases. energy crops, glycerin, silage or any similar material for the purpose of producing biogas and digestate.
- Any solid, semisolid or sludge-like organic material generated by the treatment of sewage or wastewater or otherwise derived from sewage or wastewater or their byproducts. "Sewage sludge" shall be considered synonymous with biosolids.
- A material remaining or produced as a result of the anaerobic digestion of biosolids or wastewater treatment sludges.
- The placement, distribution, land application or other handling of biosolids, digestate or wastewater treatment sludges in a manner that releases such material into any environmental media, including the ground, water or air.
- LAND APPLICATION FACILITY
- Any facility or property at which biosolids, digestate or wastewater treatment sludges are disposed, applied or otherwise used.
- PATHOGENIC ORGANISM
- Any disease-causing organisms, including, but not limited to, bacteria, viruses, protozoa and viable helminth ova.
- Any individual, firm, partnership. company, corporation, association, society or group.
- PUBLICLY OWNED TREATMENT WORKS
- Any facility owned and operated by a municipal or governmental entity for the purposes of treating wastewater, sewage or septage.
- STORAGE FACILITY
- Any facility or property used for the storage or processing of biosolids, digestate or wastewater treatment sludges.
Except as provided elsewhere within this article, no person shall collect, accept, store. process, treat, handle, generate. apply to the land or dispose of biosolids, digestate or other liquid, solid or semisolid waste, any of which contains human waste or any pathogenic organisms. or which are derived from materials containing human waste, pathogenic organisms and/or municipal wastewater, at any location within the Town of Wheatfield.
The prohibitions set forth in § 161-21, and the limitations set forth in § 161-23, shall not apply to:
Anaerobic digestion facilities that do not accept, treat, or process biosolids or sewage sludge from wastewater treatment facilities.
The generation of biosolids at a publicly owned treatment works.
Private septic systems located within the Town of Wheatfield.
The sale or storage of lawn and garden fertilizer packaged for retail sale, or the application of lawn and garden fertilizers packaged for retail sale, on an area of land less than 2.5 acres in size.
Except as otherwise provided in this § 161-23, any and all activities previously duly approved or for which permits have been duly issued prior to the effective date of this article with respect to the operation of an anaerobic digestion facility or storage facility (hereinafter "existing facilities") may be continued but may not be expanded or modified with respect to operational or storage capacity, bulk, height, area or other dimensional or spatial aspect and/or permitted activity. The term existing facility as used in this § 161-23 shall not include a land application facility. Any such existing facility shall be considered a legal nonconforming use and subject to regulation as such pursuant to Article V of Chapter 200 of the Town of Wheatfield Code.
[Amended 8-11-2014 by L.L. No. 4-2014]
Existing anaerobic digestion facilities may apply to the Town Board for a special use permit to allow conversion of its treatment process or other modifications to its operations which the applicant demonstrates will eliminate or significantly reduce potential threats to public health and the environment. The Town Board shall consider the standards set forth in § 200-74 of the Town Code and any relevant regulatory standards and scientific information in rendering its determination on such special use permit applications, including, but not limited to, whether such conversion or modification to the production of biosolids meets or exceeds "Class A" standards within the meaning of 40 C.F.R. § 503.32. Nothing contained in this Subsection B shall relieve the applicant from the need to obtain any other necessary Town of Wheatfield or regulatory approvals. The special use permit may be granted only after the Town Board conducts a public hearing held on not less than 10 days' notice published in the official Town newspapers.
[Amended 8-11-2014 by L.L. No. 4-2014]
The owner or operator of an existing facility shall provide a copy of any and all written communications, applications and reports to or from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and any other governmental or regulatory agency to the Town of Wheatfield Building Inspector at the following address within seven business days of the issuance or receipt of such written communications, applications or reports: Building Inspector. Town of Wheatfield Building Department, Lower Level -Town Hall, 2800 Church Road, Wheatfield, NY 14120.
The invalidity of any word, section, clause, paragraph, sentence or part or provision of this article shall not affect the validity of any other part of this article which shall be in effect.
[Added 8-11-2014 by L.L. No. 4-2014]
Except as otherwise provided herein, a person(s) who shall violate § 161-21 shall, upon conviction, be subject to a fine of not less than $250 nor more than $1,000 or imprisonment not to exceed one year, or both such fine and imprisonment, for any first offense. Any subsequent violations shall constitute a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, such person(s) shall be subject to a fine of not less $500 nor more than $2,000 or imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both such fine and imprisonment.
For violations involving land application of biosolids in violation of § 161-21, upon conviction for a first offense, the landowner and/or person(s) responsible for applying prohibited materials, for each application of materials prohibited under § 161-1 of this chapter the penalty shall be subject to a fine of not less than $50 per acre nor more than $100 per acre for each acre of land to which the prohibited materials were applied or imprisonment not to exceed 90 days, or both such fine or imprisonment. Any subsequent violation shall constitute a misdemeanor, and upon conviction for a second offense by the same person or persons within a five-year period, the fine shall be not less than $100 per acre nor more than $200 per acre for each acre of land to which prohibited materials were applied; or imprisonment not to exceed 180 days. Upon conviction for a third offense by the same person or persons, the offense shall be punishable by a fine of not less than $200 per acre nor more than $300 per acre for each acre of land to which prohibited materials were applied; or imprisonment not to exceed one year.
A person(s) who shall violate § 161-23C shall, upon conviction, be subject to a fine of not less than $250 nor more than $1,000 or imprisonment not to exceed one year, or both such fine and imprisonment, for any first offense. Any subsequent violations shall constitute a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, such person(s) shall be subject to a fine of not less $500 nor more than $2,000 or imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both such fine and imprisonment.