Mayor Requests $250K Budget Allocation to Fight Parallel Products
NEW BEDFORD — Mayor Jon Mitchell is stepping up the fight against Parallel Products proposal in the New Bedford Business Park.
In a budget request slated to be considered at the City Council meeting on Thursday, Mayor Mitchell proposed allocating a budget of $250,000 for legal representation for the City of New Bedford in opposing the company’s proposal to establish a new solid waste and biosolids processing facility on Duchaine Boulevard, near its existing glass recycling facility.
The Mayor posted a video explaining the budget request to YouTube Wednesday night. Using the newly rebuilt Pine Hill Park as a backdrop, the Mayor said the project proposed by Parallel Products “would simply be too close to nearby neighborhoods and could harm the quality of life of their residents.”
“This spring, Parallel Products announced that it would be proposing a facility that would process bio-waste and solid waste. As I’ve stated countless times before, this project is not right for New Bedford, much less the neighborhoods around here,” Mayor Mitchell said.
“It’s too close, it’ll generate too much traffic and it’ll potentially generate odors so bad that nobody will want to live there.”
In June, the City of New Bedford moved to retain the Boston-based municipal law firm of KP Law, P.C. (formerly known as Kopelman & Paige) to oppose the Parallel Products proposal. KP Law has significant experience in working with the relevant state regulatory agencies, and the firm has established a strong record as serving as outside counsel to the City in other matters.
“We’re now doing something about it. I’m here today to announce to everybody that I have proposed to the City Council and appropriation of $250,000 to support the hiring of legal counsel and experts to fight the approvals at the state level, which Parallel Products needs. We will be there fighting for the interests of this neighborhood. We’re not going to go into that unarmed. We’re going to make sure we have what it takes to push back,” said Mitchell.
“I know the City Council has been supportive of these efforts. I anticipate their supportiveness and the anticipation of that I’m grateful for. This is the start of a longer fight over the next couple of years and we’re prepared to do just that.”
Over the coming months, the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Office (MEPA) and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will review the Parallel Products proposal.