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More Mining at Sand Land Despite Stop-Work Order

Thu, 06/10/2021 - 12:20

Noyac residents contacted The Star on Monday to report seeing a chain across the entrance to the Sand Land mine -- with activity there apparently on hold -- after Southampton Town came down with a stop-work order on Friday. The order followed a state appeals court ruling the previous week that voided its most recent permit. 

Residents said that by Tuesday, however, crews were back in action at the Middle Line Highway facility.

Southampton Town Attorney James Burke confirmed Tuesday that Sand Land had violated the stop-work order, for which the mine has now received a court summons.

"The town feels strongly that the site cannot continue the sand mining operation at this time," Mr. Burke said, citing the appeals court ruling. He said he been in touch with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for help enforcing the ruling, and although he has not received a formal response, a regional D.E.C. director told him the state was "reviewing their options."

State Senator Anthony Palumbo and Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele Jr. issued a statement Tuesday demanding that the D.E.C. take action to shut down the mine.

We "have once again called on the D.E.C. to acknowledge the rule of law and enforce the court's decision. Additional litigation is not in the public interest. Close the mine, as you originally proposed to do in the fall of 2018, and do so immediately," Mr. Palumbo said.

The D.E.C. said in an email to The Star this week that it was "reviewing the court decision." Brian Matthews, the attorney who represents Sand Land, which is owned by the Wainscott Sand and Gravel company, could not be reached for comment this week. 

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