Mass AG: Man created 'nuisance' for neighbors

By Bryan Cohen | Oct 12, 2011


BOSTON (Legal Newsline) - Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley announced a preliminary injunction on Tuesday against a Northborough man who allegedly accepted solid waste and compostable material on his property, creating odors and noise for neighbors.

According to the preliminary injunction, Santo Anza must immediately cease and desist from accepting any solid waste, compostable materials and wood waste at his property and cannot move or remove any of the piles of solid waste or compost or operate any vehicle in and around the piles. In addition, Anza must comply with an animal health order from the state Department of Agricultural Resources and provide access to the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and DAR to check on the health of the animals he keeps on his property.

"Mr. Anza has created an intolerable nuisance condition for nearby neighbors and a hazard to the animals he keeps," Coakley said. "Mr. Anza is violating state solid waste and clean air laws, and this has become a very real problem for his neighbors and the animals on his property."

Anza allegedly dumped or allowed others to dump solid waste at his Whitney Street property. As a result, he has allegedly polluted the air and created a public nuisance by emitting rotten odors, as well as noises that annoy and disrupt the peace and comfort of nearby neighbors. The complaint alleged that Anza does not have a permit from MassDEP to operate a dumping site or an agricultural composing registration from DAR. Despite lacking the proper permit, Anza allegedly dumped spoiled food, non-food waste, manure, yard waste and cardboard on his property.

Anza's farm allegedly emitted strong and repulsive odors into a nearby residential neighborhood on an almost daily basis during the summer months of June, July and August. The stench allegedly created a nuisance condition, causing the residents to change their outdoor plans, close windows in the summer, leave their properties, refrain from inviting guests to their homes, change their sleeping arrangements and become physically ill.

The complaint also alleges that Anza is not properly caring for the animals that he owns, resulting in unsanitary conditions and a possible health threat to the livestock and poultry.

"The operations at Mr. Anza's property have generated hundreds of complaints for noxious odors and other nuisances," Kenneth Kimmell, the MassDEP commissioner, said. "With this court action, MassDEP expects that the property will be cleaned up and the nuisances will be abated. We will continue to work with the AG and the DAR to monitor the activities at this site."

MassDEP referred the matter to Coakley's office in early September.

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