June 23, 2013

County allows tonnage increase at landfill

PLATTSBURGH — Clinton County will allow Casella Waste Systems to exceed the amount of garbage it can take in at the landfill this quarter.

But legislators have done so with the understanding that the company will take in less waste in the third and fourth quarters of the year so it does not exceed its yearly tonnage allotment of 175,000 tons.

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“As long as there is no change to their maximum of 175,000 tons per year, I will support this,” Legislator Robert Butler (R-Area 6, Saranac) said at a recent legislature meeting.

Casella operates the County Landfill as part of a 25-year lease agreement that began in 1996.

Under the contract, the Vermont-based company cannot accept more than 175,000 tons of garbage per year at the Sand Road facility in Morrisonville.

The original contract called for 125,000 tons per year, but the county upped it to 175,000 in a controversial move in 1999.

There is a daily cap of 750 tons. Legislators agreed to increase that level to 850 tons per day during the second quarter.

Casella’s Matt Bokus explained to legislators that the landfill is seeing more garbage than normal in the second quarter, which ends June 30. He said the temporary closure of a burn facility in Warren County and a major fire downstate prompted more garbage to be delivered here.

Bokus said that all garbage from within the county takes precedence and will be accepted first, no matter how much out-of-town garbage is in line to be trucked in.

He said that if the county were to give the waiver, the amount of tonnage the landfill accepts in the third and fourth quarters would be less so the yearly maximum is not exceeded.

Legislators unanimously agreed to the second-quarter waiver.

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