NORWALK, Conn. – David McCarthy is on the Common Council now, but, on Wednesday, he was back on the Zoning Commission, answering questions from a lawyer.
Corporation Counsel Robert Maslan wanted to know what McCarthy and the rest of the 2011 commission could remember from conversations they had a year and a half ago.
“This is a special meeting to comply with a court order that the Zoning Commission make a good faith effort to recreate the record as much as humanly possible meetings of the plan review committee held on Sept. 8, 2011 and Dec. 8, 2011,” Maslan said to begin the proceedings.
It’s the latest development in an appeal filed by AMEC Carting LLC in January 2012 challenging the commission’s decision to deny most of the company’s application to expand its business at its construction-and-demolition transfer station at 1 Crescent St. AMEC was allowed to increase the amount of debris it takes in, but not allowed to take in debris from outside haulers.
The conference room was packed. In addition to Maslan, the commissioners and staff, there were two lawyers representing AMEC and three people from the company, including Michelle Marmarinos and Guy Mazola. Marmarinos took notes.
The committee meetings were important, Maslan said.
“Since these are post-hearing meetings, the discussion constituted deliberations and I am told by the staff that a tape recording was attempted but, because of technical difficulties, the recording is not very usable,” he said.
He pointed out that Diane Palmentiero, the minute taker, was not a city employee.
“That person does use a tape recorder, her own personal tape recorder, to assist her in preparing minutes, but she reuses those, because they’re not the official tape recording of the meeting,” he said. “As a result, those tape recordings are not available.”
Maslan used Palmentiero’s minutes as the basis for the discussion, asking if commissioners remembered anything that wasn’t in there.
However, with apologies to the late Marvin Hamlisch and lyricists Alan and Marilyn Bergman, memories did not light the corners of their minds.
Maslan asked Joe Santo and McCarthy what questions they had for the Department of Public Works, as mentioned in the minutes.
Santo’s answer included the phrase, “I don’t recall exactly what was said.”
“It would have been asking staff if DPW had any comments to help us make a decision,” he said.
McCarthy didn’t add much.
“My recollection was somewhat similar to Mr. Santo,” he said. “We had had the public hearing and been presented with a number of facts, some of which were conflicting or open to interpretation.” McCarthy said they asked for “an opinion specifically, I believe, related to drainage and traffic. As far as to what the exact question might have been, that I can’t really recall.”
Commissioner Mike Mushak confirmed the minutes when asked about his comment about trench drains. He did not remember anything else.
Asked later about Wednesday’s meeting to reconstruct the 2011 meeting, Mushak said he couldn’t comment, due to the pending litigation.