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Residents About To Blow Their Stacks Over Foul Smell In Passaic County

They Want The County And The State To Take Action Against Printing Company

CLIFTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Residents in one Garden State neighborhood are furious over fumes.

They say nauseating emissions from a nearby printing company are ruining their quality of life. Now they want county and state officials to make it stop, CBS 2’s Elise Finch reported Monday.

There is a smokestack inches away from Cara Anaya’s backyard that she says releases foul-smelling smoke.

“It’s definitely a weird smell,” Anaya said.

Residents in this quiet area described the scent they say they’ve become very familiar with over the past three and a half years.

“The smell is kind of like you’re standing behind a truck and it just turns on and the exhaust shoots right in your face,” resident James Kosior said.

“It’s like a horrible odor that goes through your nostrils and down into your throat,” Pat Picciano said.

“I get a severe headache. I can’t stay out. I have to go in the house,” Irene Picciano added.

The smoke is produced when a massive printing press is in use at the KM Media Group, located in a nearby industrial park.

People in the neighborhood said it has been going on for far too long, and now they’re demanding answers and action.

“We’re all concerned. We’re all scared for our health and we want it stopped,” resident Williams Kent said.

The owners of KM Media Group have repeatedly told people that even though the smell may be bad to them it’s not bad for them.

According to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, the facility’s permit allows for the emission of volatile organic compounds, nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxide at very low levels.

Passaic County Department of Health records show that while more than 20 odor complaints have been reported since 2011, only one resulted in a fine. And repairs were conducted within the agreed-upon time frame.

On Monday, the owners of the printing company told CBS 2 they want to be good neighbors.

“We have stopped the application that was causing the smell going up into the atmosphere as of Friday,” said Charles Tumminello of KM Media Group.

“We will correct the problem and we will be running other presses during this period,” added employee Richard Kirschenbaum said.

A replacement part should permanently eliminate all odors when this press becomes operational again in two to three months, Finch reported.

The state DEP said it is still planning to test the printing company’s smokestacks.

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