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WARREN City nears final stages of cleanup at former power plant



Published: Mon, January 7, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Proposed legislation to finish the project will go before city council later this month.

By AMANDA C. DAVIS

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

WARREN -- The city hopes to see green grass by the end of the summer at a site that's long been an eyesore.

Final cleanup at the former Mahoningside Power Plant site on Summit Street is expected to cost between $400,000 and $500,000.

Mayor Hank Angelo said the land should be cleared by the end of summer, barring any further problems at the site.

Cleanup has been ongoing since the city had two smokestacks razed on St. Patrick's Day 1999. Asbestos, heavy metals and PCBs then became the focus of cleanup efforts.

Lawmakers should have proposed legislation before them Jan. 23, allowing for project completion.

Funding: Officials say legislation will include a provision to allow the city to use $140,000 remaining in an account that held a $200,000 federal brownfields cleanup grant to help pay for remaining work at the site.

Legislation also is being drafted to pay McCabe Engineering of Richfield about $60,000 for remediation work it performed.

The mayor said McCabe officials worked to secure the $200,000 that will help pay for work they did.

In the past, city council put a $2.1 million cap on the Mahoningside cleanup.

The city used state and federal money to pay that portion, along with an $835,000 shot in the arm from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for PCB remediation.

Legislation will have to be passed to raise the cap, which will allow the city to advertise for bids for final cleanup, Angelo said.

No tax money used: Officials have stressed the city has not and will not use local tax dollars that fuel the general fund to pay for the cleanup.

Little has been going on at the site since the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency completed its efforts at the site in February 2001.

Angelo said there was a delay while the Ohio EPA was waiting for the U.S. EPA to say no further remediation was needed.

The mayor added it's great the city will soon be able to put the 40-year eyesore in the past.

davis@vindy.com




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