As a continuation of attending relevant proceedings in front of various Boards and Commissions and reporting back on them to interested residents, I attended the Oral Arguments today, Friday, March 3, 2006, in front of Judge Frances Nicolai, of the Supreme Court at the County Court building.
The arguments were on the Village’s request for a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) to prevent Northeast Interchange Railways (NIR), having already received a license from the Westchester Solid Waste Commission and a permit from the NYS DEC, from initiating operations without a special permit from the Village. In official attendance for the Village of Croton-on-Hudson were: Marianne Stecich, Village Attorney; Michael Gerrard, Special Counsel for the Village; Richard Herbek, Village Manager. Unofficially, myself and Georgianna Grant attended. Representing Greentree Realty and NIR were David Steinmetz, John McManus, and Kenneth Gunshor. Andreas Gruson, CEO of Regus Industries and NIR was also present as was another person I was unable to identify. Mr. Sean Gorman from the Journal News was also present.
The chief issue seemed to revolve around the question of whether any special permit was required from NIR to operate a C&D (construction and debris) waste transfer facility at the former Metro Enviro site. The legal argument seemed to rest on whether previously existing Special Permits issued to Industrial Recycling and later to Metro Enviro run with the land or not. The Village’s position is that they do not because the Special Permit in this case is a unique kind of special permit intended for eventually eliminating non-conforming uses.
Arguments were presented on both sides. Although Judge Nicolai said at one point that he “had made a decision already”, at the end of the arguments and replies, he provided an opportunity for written documents of support for their positions from each side. Mr. Steinmetz was directed to have his available by next Wednesday, March 8, and Ms. Stecich was directed to have her reply by Monday, March 13th. After Judge Nicolai left the courtroom, the Judge’s clerk indicated that a decision could be expected on Monday, March 13th or Tuesday, March 14th.