Mike Tubrett is concerned this garbage was illegally dumped by the Town of Holyrood on land located 30 metres from the Maher’s River. The town’s chief administrative officer says it has a permit to use the land in question. — Submitted photo
A former town councillor in Holyrood is concerned the town may be illegally dumping materials at a site across from its old incinerator that should be destined for the Robin Hood Bay Waste Management Facility — including garbage from the new town office.
Mike Tubrett was out for a walk last Friday looking for blueberries when he noticed a pile of building materials in an area approximately 30 metres from the Maher’s River, located upstream from The Willows at Holyrood golf course and the town swimming park.
“Carpets, T-Bar ceiling, paint cans, old office furniture beat up, wiring, plumbing, conduits from buildings, lots of gyprock and stuff like that,” said Tubrett, who said he has no intentions of running in the upcoming municipal election.
Tubrett also noticed a discarded phone in the waste and noticed it had buttons with the names of town staff listed on them.
“I suddenly realized that this material probably came from a renovation project that the town undertook in April and the end of March. ... They bought the Hawco Building on Salmonier Line as a new office complex. ... They had to strip it out in order to get it rebuilt inside.
“This I can pretty well guarantee is where all the stuff came from, and now it’s lying in an open gravel area next to a brook that’s upstream from a golf course and the town’s swimming park. This day and age, I don’t think this sort of stuff is acceptable. There’s a better way of doing things.”
Questioned about the town’s right to dump materials at the site, chief administrative officer Gary Corbett said the town has a permit to use the land. He said it takes full responsibility for “the small amount of material” and that it needs to be moved elsewhere.
“I can’t say it’s within any town’s right to haul material anywhere,” he said. “We’re using it as a transfer site (for) this type of material.”
Corbett said the land in question was once used as a quarry site. It is now Crown land and has been used in the past by the Department of Transportation and Works for dumping materials, according to Corbett.
Typically, the town would leave such materials at its municipal depot. When it was moving its offices from the old town hall to the Hawco Building on Salmonier Line, the depot had mountains of materials there leftover from the last bulk cleanup day.
“We started bringing some of the materials — there was some carpet and some other things — up there until we (could) figure out a way of getting it to Robin Hood Bay,” said Corbett.
Eastern Waste Management has sent several tractor trailers to Holyrood’s depot over the last month to help clear the site.
“It would have ended up in the depot at the time — this was back in April — but the depot has mountains of (garbage). But that’s cleaned up now, so we’ve either got to get it out of there and bring it back to the depot, or get it to Robin Hood Bay.”
Corbett said the town intends to work with Eastern Waste Management to find a way to remove materials from the former quarry site. While that area is secured by a locked gate, the town has become aware of multiple instances where the lock was broken in order for more garbage to be left there.
Prior to speaking with Corbett, The Telegram contacted Holyrood Mayor Gary Goobie about garbage dumped across from the old incinerator site. Goobie said he was not aware that materials were being dumped there and told The Telegram he would discuss the matter with Corbett the following day.