Ticonderoga Ticonderoga has been fined $86,500 by the state for failing a report an oil spill earlier this year.
The town must pay a $40,000 cash penalty imposed by the Department of Environmental Conservation. The remaining $46,500 fine has been suspended as long as Ti meets the stipulations of a 19-page finding issued by the DEC. Failure to complete required training and other steps will mean Ti must pay the $46,500.
This past February about 20 gallons of heating oil spilled at the town highway garage, according to Supervisor Deb Malaney. It was quickly cleaned up by highway department workers, Malaney said.
The DEC report claims 60 gallons spilled.
The Ti highway garage has a 1,000-gallon tank outside with another 250-gallon tank inside. While oil was being transferred to the small tank a valve was left unattended and heating oil spilled. The spill was the result of human error, Malaney said.
DEC was informed, Malaney said, but not for several days.
“You’re required to report any spill of five gallons or more,” Malaney said. “It was a small spill and our highway workers were unaware they had to report it.”
An anonymous person reported the spill to the DEC and made Ticonderoga officials aware of their obligation to make full disclosure. At that time, several days after the spill, Ticonderoga filed a formal report with the DEC.
Ticonderoga could have been fined $37,000 a day for each day the spill was unreported — that could have cost Ticonderoga about $400,000.
“It (the fine) could have been a lot worse, so I think the DEC was very fair with us,” Malaney said. “Still, I’m certainly not satisfied this happened. This just can’t happen. The problem is, this is our second spill in three years.”
A gasoline spill in 2010 cost Ticonderoga $275,000 in fines, remediation of the affected area and corrective actions.