People living above harmful toxins are finally starting to see work to remove the contamination

Local News

Sam Sciolino moved into Geneva seven years ago. She said she had no idea what she was getting herself into. 

“When we first moved in we bought our house on foreclosure so there wasn’t a lot of information about it,” said Sciolino, Geneva resident.

She’s talking about the former foundry site where lead and arsenic was found in the soil. Her home is just a few blocks away. 

“Can you think about starting a family knowing you may bring a child into a poisoned area?” said Sciolino. 

The foundry was in operation nearly 30 years ago. Toxins from the facility spread through the air and eventually dropped into the soil, impacting nearby businesses and homes like Sciolino’s. However plans to clean and remove up to two feet of contaminated soil in impacted areas is underway. 

“This week they’re starting to dig in yards and cut down trees and actually do the work,” said Mike Cruden. 

Mike Cruden is on the Board of Directors for the Department of Environmental Conservation. Cruden and other DEC representatives held a public session Wednesday night to let neighbors know what to expect during the multi-year cleanup process. 

“This year we had to start with sampling. Next year we’ll be able to actually start with remediation because a lot of that sampling and design will be done over the winter,” said Cruden. 

The DEC said the immediate goal for the projects is to remediate the site around a day care center and up to 16 properties nearby, then move on from there. Hearing all of this, Sciolino said she’s ready to look ahead. 

“Knowing that they’re pushing to move things forward is definitely takes the weight off a little bit,” said Sciolino. 

The DEC said all areas being impacted by the work done will eventually be restored back to it’s original placement. 

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