Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

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August 15, 2013

Settlement reached on water-sludge dump

(Continued)

While town officials have so far declined to comment on the matter because it is in litigation, documents obtained by Berberian’s lawyer indicate that the town has accepted responsibility.

“The Water Department has sent a letter stating the sedimentation is from the water tank and they will take responsibility,” according to the minutes of a Jan. 18, 2011, Conservation Commission meeting, which were cited in the lawsuit.

By May 2011, however, nothing had been done.

“The Water Department is responsible for the material in the wetland; however, they have not done anything to move forward in correcting the problem,” according to the minutes of the May 3, 2011, Conservation Commission meeting.

The lawsuit also claims the town cleaned out the storm drains near the Bancroft School on Nov. 18, 2011, causing more sediment to be washed into the wetland.

The lawsuit claims this action violated a state Department of Environmental Protection order, which only authorized the town to take actions approved by the agency.

The wetland drains into Rogers Brook, a tributary of the Shawsheen River, which leads to the Merrimack River.

None of the selectmen would comment on the agreement after Thursday’s meeting.

Berberian’s attorney said he couldn’t comment on the agreement until after it was signed by both the town and his client.

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