Greens of Chester cited for runoff pollution

Developer subject to $37,500-per-day fine: State finds turbid water coming out of Whispering Hills outlet, fouling wetland

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  • Runoff from the Greens of Chester in November (Photo provided)

  • Runoff from the Greens of Chester in November (Photo provided)

  • Runoff from the Greens of Chester in November (Photo provided)

  • Runoff from the Greens of Chester in November (Photo provided)

— The Greens of Chester, a 431-unit housing development now under construction in the Town of Chester, has been cited by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) for polluting the neighborhood with runoff.

The lack of erosion and sediment controls violates Environmental Conservation Law and is subject to fines of up to $37,500 for every day the violation exists.

The notice, dated Dec. 4, was sent to Rodney Merkley at Greens at Chester, LLC, 24 North May Place, Nanuet, N.Y. It says the DEC conducted a follow-up inspection on Nov. 26 to see if the developer was complying with the DEC's permit for stormwater discharges from construction activity. The DEC inspectors saw turbid water coming out of an the outlet at Whispering Hills and flowing into the wetland next to Route 17, "causing a visible contrast from natural conditions."

The inspectors also found water quality violations at Whispering Hills on Nov. 6, subject to fines up to $37,500 per violation per day.

On Nov. 26, the inspectors made the following observations:

Stormwater discharge from the Conklington Road sediment basin was cloudy.

Cloudy water from the site’s storm drains flowed into the stream that runs through Conklington Road

Discharge from Aspen Road sediment basin was turbid.

The DEC says the developer must stabilize inactive areas of the construction site, as well as side slopes along the access roads. Hay and mulch must be applied at the rates specified by the state, and the fence next to the Aspen Road Sediment basin must be repaired.

Neighbors have been complaining about runoff all summer, which brought more than the usual amount of rain. Alex Jamieson, then the Chester supervisor, said the town cited the Greens for runoff after a July 25 storm.

Related storiesSee these related articles at

"More rain, more silt in the Otterkill and Black Meadow"

"State explains why Legoland received runoff violations and the Greens did not"

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