From Dan Tepfer, CT Post:
East End residents scored a win for jobs Monday when a judge refused to block a recycling plant from opening in their neighborhood.
“This is a great victory for the community,” ex-state Sen. Ernest Newton said. “It’s going to be jobs for the people who live in the neighborhood.”
John Pinheiro, the lawyer for the owner of the proposed recycling plant, said plans for the plant will now move forward. He said they eventually hope to employ 80 people from the East End and neighboring East Side.
“This is a grand slam,” Pinheiro continued. “Here we have a developer who wants to invest money in the city, he has the support of the neighborhood, it will be an environmentally green facility and only one person wants to stop it.”
That person is Herbert Harrington, the owner of Queens Grant Partnership.
His brother, Wes Harrington, is president of Rotair Industries, the maker of helicopter parts that is across the street from the vacant lot on Williston Avenue where Sampson Associates wants to build the recycling plant.
Herbert Harrington, who owns the property where the helicopter parts company is located, had filed for an injunction to block the city from giving the property, which it took by foreclosure, to Sampson for the plant, claiming the facility would cause too much noise and truck traffic.
However, in a 20-page decision, Superior Court Judge Richard Gilardi ruled that he was not going to block a project that is supported by residents and the city and has a chance of bringing jobs and revitalization to a blighted neighborhood.
Although the parts maker is next to the train tracks, Harrington testified during a prior hearing before the judge that he was concerned about the vibrations the recycling plant would generate. However, he also conceded that his company had also been interested in the property after the city had taken it over by foreclosure.
In addition to denying the injunction, the judge also ordered Harrington to pay Sampson’s legal costs.
“This took a year off the project and the expenses my client incurred are significant,” Pinheiro added.
Harrington’s lawyer, family relative John Harrington, said he had not seen the judge’s decision and couldn’t comment on it. “I’ll review everything and deal with it accordingly,” he said.
Asked following Monday night’s City Council meeting to comment on the ruling, Mayor Bill Finch said, “It’s a permitted use.”
Finch at one point had been subpoenaed to testify during the hearing, but the subpoena was thrown out.