MadisonTownship Trustees building.jpg

MADISON TOWNSHIP ─ Madison Township is planning to apply for a state or federal grant to clean up the toxic substance found at a demolition site.

About 28.4 ppm polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) concentration was found at the site next to the fire station on Expressview Drive, according to Certified Environmental, Inc. (CEI). The amount of PCB was higher than the standard. The township hired CEI to sample the soil and make the assessment.

CEI estimated it would cost $60,000 to $75,000 to have certified companies clean up the substance and transport it to a landfill.

In the township’s Tuesday evening meeting, chairman trustee Jim Houser said the Richland County Land Bank connected him with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency. An official said he can provide a second opinion on the site and help the township get a grant from the Ohio EPA or the U.S. EPA to cover the disposal expense.

The official mentioned the Ohio EPA’s Targeted Brownfield Assessment program, Houser said. Madison Township will need to wait until next year to get funding because several applicants have already been in line ahead of it of this year.

Houser said the official was concerned about the demolition site’s status and suggested the township cover the contaminated area with plastic. The opinion was different from that of CEI, which said the area does not need to be covered.  

The trustees voted to spend $3,000 on the project on Tuesday to use 12-mil heavy duty plastic to cover the contaminated area. It will be conducted by H&T Demolition, who was demolishing the building on the site.

Trustee Dan Fletcher said while applying for a grant for the cleanup sounds appropriate, the township should have a backup plan. Trustee Catherine Swank said the township cannot pay for the cleanup from its pocket and needs to look for financial support.

Madison Township has held $2,000 from the payment for H&T for the demolition. Houser said Tuesday the township stopped the contractor’s work under the condition that if the site was contaminated, the demolition project is done.

Houser said H&T had gone as far as it could. There was nothing else it can do on the original contract. He motioned to release the $2,000 to the contractor but the other trustees did not support it.

Fletcher said H&T did not do all the work in the contract, so the township should not pay the contractor all the money. Swank abstained from the vote and said she wanted to seek legal advice on the issue.     

In other business, trustees approved the union contracts of Madison Township Fire Department and Road Department, both with Fletcher’s objection. Swank said the new contract will provide the fire department with a 2.4-percent pay raise over the next three years, starting in April.

The road department’s contract will go back to January 2020 when it expired, Swank said. The pay raise will be 1.6-percent for the first year and 1-percent for the second and third year. The first year’s signing bonus is $500 and $700 for remsininh years. Both unions agreed to pay 10-percent of the salary for their health insurance, dental and vision benefits.

Support Our Journalism

Do you want to know the who, what, where, why and how in local news? Become a Source member to support the most diverse coverage of our region.