MOUNT VERNON, N.Y. - With the city facing thousands - and possibly millions - of dollars in fines, Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas says some outgoing politicians have left “some tough decisions behind for their successors.”
Thomas said that at the final Board of Estimate and Contract meeting of 2017, former Comptroller Maureen Walker and City Council President failed to properly pay for a $55,000 fine that was imposed by the Department of Environmental Conservation on the city for polluting the Hutchinson River Parkway from its public works yard.
According to Thomas, “the outgoing Comptroller and Council President agreed to pay the $55,000 fine to the DEC, but stopped short of addressing the specific terms of the consent order, which includes mandatory milestones that the city must meet.”
Thomas said that the Department of Justice has confirmed that they will be suing Mount Vernon and levying a “significant monetary penalty” for repeated violations of the Clean Water Act over the past 14 years, with penalties reportedly potentially reaching nearly $100 million.
"Anticipated fines could amount to $225,000 per day, or nearly $1.6 million a week. This is the ugly penalty for political dysfunction and malfeasance. This does not include the cost to make repairs, which are estimated at $60 million over a 10-year period."
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