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Hiller Cove Faces Potential Harm from Malm Building Project

Perjuring priest Bob Malm, whose wife Leslie was sued not that many years ago for failing to pay her kids’ dental bills, is building a new home on land long owned by his family in Mattapoisett Massachusetts. In doing so, Malm has drawn vociferous objections from neighbors due to the site’s location, which abuts sensitive wetlands. As a result, residents reportedly fear that the home will increase pollution in nearby Hiller Cove, named after members of Malm’s mother’s family and home to a small, environmentally fragile salt marsh.

The news comes just seven years after Grace Episcopal wrote off $100,000 of a loan the church had made to Malm for the purchase of a personal residence. This was on top of an already generous compensation package, in which one out of every five dollars of church revenue went to Malm’s salary.

In addition, following Malm’s 2014 accident, the church collected a very generous purse for Malm and his family, which was supplemented by another purse at the time of Malm’s retirement. And yet at no point did the church ask Malm if he was able to repay the loan, which had been accruing interest for more than a decade, with Malm making no payments on the loan the entire time.

Neighbors have expressed concern about whether the lot will perk, since the home will have a septic system. Moreover, Malm obtained a variance to locate the septic field within 75 feet of a drainage ditch, which eventually makes its way into the nearby bay. Thus, many are concerned that the home will increase pollution in area waters, which already face excessive levels of coliform (fecal) bacteria in several areas. Also of concern is that fact that the perc test on the property appears to have been done during a drought, which will definitely affect the results; were the same test done when the ground is saturated, it might well be that the land would not perc.

In response, local authorities encouraged Malm and residents to communicate in an effort to resolve their concerns, but it appears this has not happened, with Malm reportedly adamant about making any changes to the plans.

And while Malm has prevailed at the local level, informed sources tell me that neighbors are considering an appeal to the state. Moreover, the average height above sea level in Mattapoisett only seven feet, building in a low-lying area at a time of rising sea levels may not be a great idea, even as events like Hurricane Sandy become increasingly prevalent. And while the site itself is not considered to be within the 100-year flood plain as depicted on FEMA maps, it sits not far away from the flood plain, meaning that the site clearly is associated with an elevated risk of flooding.

Evidence suggests most, if not all, of the cost of the home comes from the sale of Malm’s home in Alexandria, which was subsidized by Grace Church, as well as money he inherited from his mother.

If nothing else, the uproar underscores both the sycophantic relationship Grace Church had with perjuring priest Bob Malm, as well as the latter’ s lack of interest in forging consensus, or in caring for creation. In other words, another glaring example of Bob Malm’s indifference to anything but his own interests.

Here is the most recent article in the local newspaper covering the controvery:

Aucoot Road Project Gets Green Light

And here is the original coverage:

House Project Sparks Wetland Debate