ACAL Continues Environmental
Adirondack Communities Advisory League (ACAL) will observe its 15th year of environmental and community service in 2008. ACAL’s work over the years has been quite remarkable, and despite the landfill outcome, there are many reasons to celebrate this milestone. Not unlike the previous 14 years, we are off to a busy start, and we are looking forward to new challenges in 2008 that will help to further our mission.
In keeping with our commitment to public outreach, ACAL has prepared a three part series of articles to reflect on our past, present and future. Stay tuned for an update on ACAL’s Clean Water Act citizens’ suit in Part 2.
Part 1 - Past
If the measure of success is determined only by battles won, few people would ever dare to fight for the causes they believe in. On the surface, it appears that ACAL lost all on October 24, 2006 at 8:01am when the Ava landfill accepted its first load of garbage. But anyone willing to look deeper, will see that the last 15 years have been filled with countless successes as everyday citizens and Veterans set aside personal priorities to become advocates for wildlife, our natural resources, and a sacred Veterans’ Memorial Forest. So yes, we should celebrate, and never forget, all the good deeds carried out so valiantly along the way.
Early on, ACAL was labeled as the “dump fighters”, more formally referred to as a NIMBY (not in my back yard) group. People use the NIMBY label when they want to discredit the work of their adversary. Citizens organize and fight landfills because they are harmful to the environment and to communities. Because of citizen participation, the world continues to see fewer and fewer landfills. ACAL’s environmental mission, carefully crafted in 1993, reflects every citizens’ desire to protect and preserve all that we hold sacred in this wonderful place called the “
For the record, no such NIMBY group exists anywhere, just citizen organizations fighting for better environmental policies, a fair process, and the constitutional rights of every citizen.
Considering the many citizen mediated success stories, one might then ask the question, how does a site labeled as unfavorable hydrogeology, situated immediately adjacent to a Veterans’ Memorial Forest, become the “perfect” location for a landfill? There is one solitary answer to this question.
The landfill exists because elected officials crafted a law that gave the Oneida-Herkimer Solid Waste Authority (OHSWA) the power to take away citizens’ rights. This is the single most important offense that occurred as a result of the landfill siting process. Everyone needs to hear these words and understand the consequences of the precedent that is being set all across our nation. When citizens’ rights get in the way of a project, lawmakers simply create a new law that removes the obstruction.
Citizens’ rights are getting in the way of landfills. In western
Present Environmental Justice laws are based on the premise that all citizens have a right to live in a pollution free environment. Apparently, equal protection under the law has another meaning for NYS lawmakers. Or more precisely, it has no meaning at all.
As we ponder the constitutionality of NYS lawmakers’ actions, let us be reminded of the words of our fore fathers, found in the 14th Amendment of the United States Constitution:
“. . . No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the
Kathy Crofoot, Director of Research
03/16/12 - NEW SCHOLARSHIP INFORMATION
08/07/11 - Can Landfill Odors Be Prevented?
07/27/11 - Don't Give Up the Ship
12/21/10 - AUTHORITY SETTLES LAWSUIT WITH ACAL
10/11/10 - Black River Trash Bash
07/02/10 - Burning household trash is illegal in New York
06/17/10 - New Yorkers for Zero Waste Platform
07/13/09 - ACAL - Alive and well
04/13/08 - ACAL 2008 Update - Part 2
03/18/08 - ACAL Continues Environmental Mission in 2008
11/09/07 - Tug Hill Tomorrow Land Trust
10/26/07 - A good read - The Adirondack Atlas
10/12/07 - New York State Opening Meeting Law
09/28/07 - ACAL Fall Foliage Auction Oct. 5
09/21/07 - Integrity found in the Town of Ava
09/14/07 - Tug Hill resources have been targeted
08/19/07 - Fair and straighforward journalism?
08/10/07 - A Needed Appreciation for Nature
08/03/07 - New York State Municipal Home Rule Law
07/27/07 - Boonville Village Litter/Debris Local Law
07/19/07 - Black River Landing Subdivision Issues
07/13/07 - WTE vs. Landfills
06/29/07 - Too many impaired waters - Black River Watershed
06/22/07 - Protecting our drinking water starts at home
06/15/07 - ACAL Joins Northern Forest Alliance
06/07/07 - ACAL Holds 200/20 Drawing & Picnic, Annual Meeting
06/07/07 - ACAL AWARDED GRANT
06/01/07 - Be a solution - get involved
05/25/07 - American flags do not belong in landfills
05/24/07 - PRESS RELEASE - ACAL Signs Stolen & Vandalized
05/18/07 - Reality check for the DEC
05/04/07 - All citizens are called to act responsibly
04/27/07 - "An Inconvenient Truth"
04/13/07 - Citizens Deserve the Whole Truth ...
04/06/07 - Great Lakes United & Citizen Resources
03/30/07 - "What is the future of local government?"
03/23/07 - Citizens Expect More From Local Government
03/16/07 - Plastic Grocery Bags Harm Wildlife
03/09/07 - The Precious Gift of Water
03/02/07 - Working Together to Protect the Environment
02/26/07 - Grassroots groups are citizens who care!
02/16/07 - Local Citizens Want Environment Protected
02/09/07 - Open Letter to Boonville Town/Village Officials
02/02/07 - Ava Landfill Story Told in Chicago
01/26/07 - It's time for New Yorkers to reclaim their rights!
01/12/07 - CITIZENS' RIGHTS ARE NOT FOR SALE!
01/05/07 - "DO NOT LITTER" Applies to Everyone
12/15/06 - "March of the Penguins"
12/08/06 - Be "good news" in the community
12/01/06 - Moose Creek Prediction - 12 years ago!
11/22/06 - United Haulers v. OHSWA
11/17/06 - A Citizen's Rights
11/03/06 - EXERCISE YOUR RIGHT TO VOTE
11/01/06 - ACAL statement regarding opening of landfill
10/24/06 - OHSWA Opens Landfill Without Required DEC Permit
10/20/06 - OHSWA required by DEC to have proper permit
10/13/06 - Dr. Bob Johnson Speaks at Public Forum
10/06/06 - OHSWA Fails to Deliver
10/04/06 - PRESS RELEASE - Court Denies OHSWA Motions
09/26/06 - PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT
09/21/06 - If OHSWA knew what they were doing ...
09/08/06 - Joint Board Resolution Revisited
08/28/06 - A Special Message
08/11/06 - Who will save the Town of Ava?
07/21/06 - The Emperor isn't wearing any clothes!
06/10/06 - Honoring Flag Day
05/19/06 - Local Residents Demand Protection for Environment
05/12/06 - The Foundation for a Better Life
05/05/06 - ACAL will pursue justice
04/28/06 - "Tug Hill, A Threatened Paradise"
04/21/06 - NYS environmental law contradicts State action
04/13/06 - The Tug Hill Plateau is worth protecting!
03/22/06 - Press Release - OHSWA & Rifenburg Being Sued
02/24/06 - ACAL Finds NYSDEC Consent Out of Order
02/03/06 - ACAL Defends the Truth
01/02/06 - PRESS RELEASE
12/15/05 - ACAL Continues with its Mission
12/01/05 - Tug Hill Heritage
11/23/05 - Boonville Breaks Resolution
11/06/05 - October 2005 OHSWA meeting
10/28/05 - NYS Waste Disposal Policies Not Enforced
10/21/05 - Environmental Conservation Laws
10/12/05 - Response to Village Trustee
09/23/05 - OHSWA Permit Violations
09/16/05 - ACAL Misinformation
09/07/05 - Press Release: DEC Enforcement Action
08/24/05 - ACAL Misinformation
08/05/05 - It's never too late
07/22/05 - Citizens, stand strong - DO NOT NEGOTIATE!
07/15/05 - PRESS RELEASE - Problems on Ava Landfill Site
07/08/05 - The truth must be told
07/07/05 - WBRV Statement #5 - DANGER to our drinking water
07/06/05 - WBRV Statement #4 - Polluting landfills kill
07/05/05 - WBRV STATEMENT #3 - Boonville Poll Not Official
06/29/05 - WBRV Statement #2 - Landfills provide NO benefits
06/27/05 - WBRV Statement #1 -Towns must stick together
06/24/05 - Waste to energy facilities better alternative
06/17/05 - Boonville boards break agreement
06/17/05 - Slope failure sends mud into Moose Creek AGAIN!
06/12/05 - Environmentally safe alternatives to landfills
05/27/05 - Town of Ava will file an appeal
05/22/05 - Dynamite blasting on landfill site?
05/15/05 - Oneida County in Trouble
05/08/05 - FACTS and What You Can Do
05/01/05 - Community Gathers for Prayer Service
04/24/05 - Personal Letter to NYS Comptroller Alan G. Hevesi
04/17/05 - Power of Prayer
04/03/05 - The Waste Authority Must Be Stopped!
03/27/05 - Letter to NYS Comptroller Alan G. Hevesi
03/20/05 - OHSWA Propaganda
03/13/05 - Letter to Griffo - Put Words into Action!
03/06/05 - Get involved in your community
02/27/05 - Assemblyman Townsend Has Concerns Re: OHSWA
02/06/05 - Power of the Press
01/24/05 - Legislator Pam Mandryck Opposes SWA Reappointment
01/02/05 - Weeks of 1/2 - 1/16/05
12/22/04 - Response to letter
12/12/04 - Senator Ray Meier Favors Ava Landfill
11/28/04 - Proud Heritage
11/14/04 - Oneida County chooses - for the people, or not?
11/07/04 - Letters sent to Governor and NYS Senators
10/31/04 - Ava/Boonville future - NO DUMP!
10/28/04 - Letter to Governor Pataki
10/24/04 - Environment Justice All the Way!
10/22/04 - Press Release
10/17/04 - No Civil Rights for Ava Residents
10/10/04 - Article 78 Lawsuit Against DEC Commissioner Crotty
10/03/04 - 400+ Days and Still Fighting!
09/27/04 - Family Home Threatened
09/26/04 - Important Facts to Know About the Ava Landfill
09/19/04 - Letter from Concerned Citizen
09/12/04 - Small Town of Ava Dragged into Court by OHSWA
08/29/04 - Where Do Your Loyalities Lie?
08/22/04 - Beaver Dam Incident Still a Mystery
08/15/04 - Ava-Boonville-Lewis Joint Boards Resolution
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