Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze & Observer 06-25-2020

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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24 SMITHFIELD / SCITUATE JUNE 25-JULY 1, 2020 | VALLEY BREEZE & OBSERVER "People can still come and sit on the grass and watch the water," Caine said. He, Town Manager Randy Rossi, and Emergency Management Services Director Todd Manni decided together in April to close the beaches. He said it would be impossible to maintain social distancing on the beaches due to the small size of the facilities. "Beaches are so small to begin with that if you reduce that size, you don't really have much room left," he said. Caine said the town will not charge for access to Georgiaville this year, but the main parking lot is closed. The town will continue to test the waters if an algae bloom is discovered, but Caine said Smithfield is not obli- gated to do so due to closure. He added that the same policies of taking trash with you and no dogs allowed are still in effect. Recreation workers are reporting an increase in lit- ter at the parks, he said. Caine added that other recreation activities are happening over the sum- mer in Smithfield. Recreational base- ball and soccer have begun "glorified practices," he said. The town's tennis program stopped offerings to adults and children, but will keep the program for young adults and teenagers. Basketball courts will open this week as well, Caine said. Public basketball courts include facilities at Deerfield Park, Lisa Ann Circle, and Anna McCabe Elementary School. Caine said people should fol- low state social distancing gatherings when using courts or while on town property. Courts at Old County Road Elementary School are being torn up and replaced and are still only for school use. Even if the state loosened up on social distancing guidelines and gather- ing limits, Rossi said Smithfield would not have the time to find lifeguards. He explained that the town has struggled every year to find certified lifeguards, which was no different this year. Advertisements for positions go out as early as February, Rossi said. Each shift needs at least three lifeguards according to regulations, two to watch swimmers and one on standby, he said. Offering positions to lifeguards to later turn around and take them back due to beach closures did not sit well with him, Rossi said. Caine said some staff members will be welcomed back to work as gatekeepers to ensure people are not swimming and that they are follow- ing public property rules. He said staff members may also do light painting and upkeep on beach buildings. According to Caine, the Recreation Department is busier than ever help- ing other town departments, such as delivering with Meals on Wheels for the senior center and taking care of the fields, town properties and cemeteries. The Valley Breeze is committed to keeping quality news stories like this one free to our readers. You can be a huge part of this local journalism success story by making a one- time or monthly contribution to what we do every week at Thank you as always for reading. BEACHES From Page One remedy to begin treating and monitor- ing the effectiveness of treatment over several years, Deegan said. "The meeting this week is designed to both inform area residents about EPA's proposed plan to address groundwater contamination, and also is one way that interested parties may provide formal comments to the EPA on our proposed plan," he said. The plan includes treatment of groundwater in the shallow bedrock zone containing the majority of con- tamination, monitoring the contami- nated groundwater plume to evaluate remedy performance, and controls to prevent exposure. The performance will be assessed over 12 years, and the total project is estimated to cost $6.7 million. Town Manager Randy Rossi said he was glad the EPA was hosting the discussion and allowing Smithfield's voices to be heard. "We're the guests at this meeting," he said. He said the plan shows final cleanup happening in May 2022. Rossi said the property owners, the Davis family, are considering putting a solar farm on the site, but cleanup of the site must be completed first. "This is important because there are a lot of potential areas affected by it, including residents. It's a critical discus- sion for a game plan to keep our resi- dents safe," Rossi said. He said while he has heard rum- blings around town about the water near the superfund site, the town has not received any formal complaints yet. The property owner disposed of a variety of liquid and solid waste con- taining hazardous substances in the 1970s. The site accepted contaminants such as paint and metal sludge, oily wastes, solvents, acids, caustics, pesticides, phenols, halogens, metals, fly ash and lab pharmaceuticals, all of which con- taminated the groundwater at the site and surrounding areas. "Nearby private wells were found to be contaminated by wastes emanating from the site in bedrock groundwater," the EPA said. The EPA conducted a remedial investigation study in 1987, which led to a deal with the responsible parties to clean up "major contaminants of concern in the overburden and bed- rock groundwater," exceeding federal and state standards. Parties agreed to clean the site under EPA and Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management oversight. "Tank trucks directly discharged liquid wastes into unlined lagoons and seepage pits. Drums containing chemicals and laboratory containers were burins on-site or crushes," stated the EPA. From 1985 to 1986, the EPA sam- pled 600 drums of soils from the prop- erty. At the same time, the RIDEM provided drinking and cooking water to homes with contaminated wells. In 1997, the EPA and RIDEM built a 300,000-gallon water tank, pumping stations and connections to existing residents and undeveloped lots. Since 1990, 5,000 tons of solid waste, soils and 800 drums and containers were removed from the site. In the fol- lowing two years, 20,000 tons of con- taminated soil, waste, and debris for disposal were removed, and 788,000 tons of contaminated soils were treated for on site. In addition, more than 300 trees were planted to restore the habitat. People interested in providing feed- back to the EPA beyond this week's meeting may do so by emailing luce., faxing 617-918-0337, calling 617-918-1820, or by mail at U.S. EPA Region 1, Mail code: 07-01, 5 Post Office Square, Boston, MA 02109. Comments are accepted through July 15. For more information, visit www. . The Valley Breeze is committed to keeping quality news stories like this one free to our readers. You can be a huge part of this local journalism success story by making a one- time or monthly contribution to what we do every week at Thank you as always for reading. 'Beaches are so small to begin with that if you reduce that size, you don't really have much room left.' ROBERT CAINE Recreation Director SUPERFUND From Page One Gentian Garden Club hosts plant sale Saturday SCITUATE – The Gentian Garden Club will host a plant sale on Saturday, June 27, from 9 a.m. to noon, at the North Scituate Community House, 546 West Greenville Road. All plants will be sold for $5. The rain date will be Sunday, June 28. Mother of Hope Camp 1589 Putnam Pike Chepachet, RI 02814 401-568-3580 June 29 - August 14 •Traditonal Camp Activities •Ages 5-12 •Weekly & Daily Options •Affordable Pricing •Special Discounts •Friendly Professional Staff •Secure Online Registration Call us for more information! Registration is now open! Come enjoy our 136 acres of woodlands Live - Learn - Grow Serving Northern RI for Over 20 Years WE ARE OPEN BY APPOINTMENT ONLY 982 Mendon Road, Cumberland, RI 401-333-6399 120 Danielson Pike, Foster, RI 401-647-5025 Gift Certificates Available 1046 Hartford Pike, N. Scituate, RI 02857 (Rt. 101 near Rt. 102) 401-647-0630 WWW.WOODBRIDGEGREENHOUSES.COM We will be CLOSED for the summer starting June 29 th CLEARANCE SALE 25%-30% OFF Perennials Shrubs Trees SALE ENDS JUNE 28TH Summer Breeze

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