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Sunday, May 29, 2005

Clean up your mess

If you're going to leave, the least you could do is clean up the mess you made.

But while the Navy pledges $23.9 million toward cleaning the base it opened as a naval station in 1868, officials said Wednesday that cleanup would only be to industrial standards. State officials fear the money won't be nearly enough to make the land fit for residential or recreational use.

"That's not a redevelopment opportunity, that's a minefield of contamination," said Gina McCarthy, commissioner of the state Department of Environmental Protection.

The military has a history of shutting down bases and leaving behind contaminated land. Thirty-four bases closed since 1988 are on the Superfund list of worst toxic waste sites, and none is completely cleaned yet.

Guess who is going to be felt with the bill?