Home News and Features Stump Dump Closed for Environmental Violations; City Offers Alternative Yard Waste Disposal

Stump Dump Closed for Environmental Violations; City Offers Alternative Yard Waste Disposal

Various barrels, including waste receptacles, are currently piled at the south end of the Montpelier Stump Dump, not far from the north edge of Hubbard Park. According to City Public Works Director Kurt Motyka, the DPW has not had time to organize the materials since the flood, but said there are plans to clean up the site as part of correcting wetlands and solid waste permitting violations. Photo by Jake Brown.
City officials have indefinitely closed the Montpelier Stump Dump, a resource that, for many years, city residents have used to dispose of tree and yard waste. The city is working to come into compliance with environmental violations at the site, discovered last year by the state Agency of Natural Resources (ANR).

The stump dump is located on Finch Road, off Route 12 across from the North Branch Nature Center.

The closure of the site comes after the ANR found the city in violation of wetlands regulations from dump debris encroaching a wetland. The state also found violations of state solid waste rules because the city did not have a permit to dump snow and recycled asphalt, activities the city had been conducting on the site.

According to Kurt Motyka, director/engineer of Montpelier’s Public Works Department, the city is working to come into compliance by removing the fill in the wetland and re-grading the area, as well as obtaining state permits for dumping snow along with asphalt recycling. He said the city has allocated $50,000 to pay for a remediation plan, and proposals are due May 17. The remediation work itself would follow the study. That work will cost additional money of an undetermined amount, he said.

Motyka said city staff had pushed woody debris into the wetland, but, at the time, staff was not aware the area was a wetland because it was unmapped until the state recently delineated the area as such.

According to information on the ANR website, wetlands maps are for informational purposes only and not all wetlands are mapped. For permitting purposes, wetland boundaries must be field-delineated by a wetlands specialist, according to ANR.

Motyka said the city is also using the stump dump for storage of things such as downtown trash receptacles — which he said were placed there during last summer’s flooding. There are also water system parts stored in a large trailer, used playground parts, metal pipes, and what appear to be fire hydrants, plastic barrels, a disused snow plow, a broken bicycle, and large piles of PVC pipe.

He said the site will be “cleaned up and organized” once all the restoration work is done and before it’s regraded.

It’s unclear if the site will again be a disposal area for residents who want to dispose of yard waste, according to an April 26 city press release.

Where Do I Take My Yard Waste?

There are two options for yard waste disposal; each takes different materials.

Grass, leaves, and plant clippings go to the Montpelier Public Works garage at 783 Dog River Road. This is part of a pilot program to provide a service similar to what residents used to have with the stump dump. Brush and tree limbs will not be accepted there. The garage will accept yard waste only on Fridays, from 8 a.m. to noon, at no charge for Montpelier residents.

Another option offers disposal of branches as well as grass, leaves, and plant clippings, at the Casella facility at 408 East Montpelier Road (next to Agway). Debris should be separated by type: lawn clippings, plant material, and branches less than one inch in diameter can go together, at a cost of $5 for 45 gallons. Branches greater than one inch should be separated from the lawn and leaf debris. This debris will cost $8 per ton, with a $30 minimum.