Friday, May 11, 2012

Experiential Journal: Health Board Tackles Noxious Odors

By Molly Rothberg

          On Tuesday, April 17th, I attended a town council meeting in Middlesex, N.J. to listen and catch up on the major environmental issue that has been ongoing for several years. Middlesex Board of Health member, Nancy Myers-Holmes has been on the board since January 2011 and attended the meeting.
          The ongoing issue that was discussed that evening was regarding the Spray-Tek issue. Spray-Tek is a company that takes liquid consumable products and converts them into powder-form products. They work with flavors, fragrances, cosmetics and food additives and take the liquid form of the product to convert it into a powder-form for the distributers.
          The Public Board of Health of the Middlesex borough has sued Spray-Tek over concerns that the odors that they produce may be unsafe and harmful for the local residents. The lawsuit remains ongoing, which was stated at the borough meeting.
          It was made clear at the meeting that the Environmental Protection Agency still checks up on Spray-Tek monthly to make sure the company is within health standards. For example, the company must keep the odors regulated by using filters and vents that placed throughout the building so they are less-spread throughout the town. Spray-Tek is also required to work on their “bigger projects” that result in heavy odors during off hours on the day, such as the middle of the night. The company is a 24/7 business that functions at all hours.
          The borough also addressed the complaint process that Middlesex residents can participate in. This was recognized at the meeting and it’s been noticed to be a success for complaints and concerns. Middlesex County mailed out a form on how to take action on the odors, and it has been a major achievement since because residents are calling.
          The town has no intention of shutting Spray-Tek down. They are a working company doing their job, while Middlesex does their job by making sure the residents are okay.

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