October 26, 2009

Good Evening . Thank you for this opportunity to comment on the Tuxedo Reserve DSEIS.

As you know, this site is challenging on many levels. One of the most significant and difficult challenges is the management of stormwater run-off so that it does not degrade water quality. Maintaining water quality is important for esthetic reasons – but most importantly, the development poses the threat of harmful effects on drinking water as this development is in the watershed of the Ramapo River and the Tuxedo Lake reservoir.

There is such concern about Tuxedo Lake that specific laws exists at the State level expressly stating in the statute “all persons living on or visiting the watershed shall refrain from any act, though not heretofore specified, which may result in contamination of any portion of the water supply.”

The aims of the stormwater management plan are laudable, and the developer is not anticipating pollution of our waters. What we need in the special permit is a protocol for regular testing of the streams and lakes before construction , during and after to make certain that the developer has actually achieved the goals strived for. I remember commenting on Hamilton Estates and being told that the stormwater measurements would protect the pond. Well, those measurements didn’t work and now we have a pond that looks awful and has needed special attention. Those who were responsible for the degradation are long gone.

We need to learn from that mistake. Require the developer to demonstrate that the stormwater management methods are working. The testing is simple and straightforward. Problems could be identified and rectified before damage is done. Over 650 families rely on Tuxedo Lake water for drinking water. This reservoir serves our schools. The school children deserve your protection. It is so easily provided by requiring benchmark testing. Once the development has been completed and the supervision of systems are handed over to the Home Owners’ Association, similar testing programs should be required. Let those who use the stormwater system show that it is being maintained properly.

It is reasonable to expect the developer to demonstrate that the systems being proposed actually work. There are many thousands of people depending upon you to help maintain a safe drinking water supply. Please do your part to protect the public and require an appropriate testing protocol that will prove that stormwater is actually being managed within these two watersheds. Thank you.

Susan Goodfellow

7 Stable Road

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