May 8, 2015
After giving the Solid Waste Committee (SWC) their “charge”, Comm. Trammell told them they would meet in the other room and the county attorney would talk to them about open meetings! Really? It was hard to keep from bursting out laughing!
The county attorney couldn’t seem to remember how open meetings laws were written when he allowed the BOC to go into Executive Session to discuss/draw up/and/or read a Solid Waste Authority Resolution and then come out and vote on it when it wasn’t on the agenda or even something allowed to be done in Executive Session. Nevertheless, the county attorney gave the committee “directions” about open meetings and then told them the following about what had been happening:
County Attorney talks with the Solid Waste Committee (SWC)
County attorney, Jim Alexander, started off talking about the “rumors” they (the SWC) might have heard. But as you listen to the video you will see, there were no rumors by the public, only lies by the Commissioners. Here are some things that the county attorney said:
- No deal has been made with anyone, but discussions have been undertaken.
- $25,000 to $100,000 per year could be paid by outside landfill operators “of significant sizes” to the county to haul in their waste to our landfill.
- The county was approached through the “landfill consultant”, meaning landfill employee Matthew Roper, who has now left the county’s employ.
- Admitted the BOC looked to purchase additional land to expand the landfill to its fullest capacity. (How many times did the commissioners at both the citizens meeting and the BOC meeting say they were NOT expanding the landfill? SEVERAL!)
- Right now the landfill brings in 2500 tons per year vs. 200 tons per day that would be brought in to make money. According to the committee chair you hear speaking, by bringing in that much waste a 40 year landfill life decreases to a 1-1/2 year life.
The BOC has vehemently denied any expansion of the landfill when citizens asked them questions at two separate meetings. They also said it wouldn’t hurt “our” roads because these trucks would be driving on “State” roads. The county attorney said the truck traffic would be the biggest downside, but that is only his opinion of the “biggest” downside.
The BOC was urged to sign a 30 year contract or longer by Roper Environmental Services. If 200 tons a day would fill up in 1-1/2 years, just how much land was the BOC considering to buy to make the landfill last 30 years? It sounds like that would be a HUGE landfill.
The next blog will have Chairman Gene Trammell telling the BOC what their duties are and a view of the committee members. It will also tell you about how they discussed a $16,000,000 (yes, million) deal with Lamar County for “waste to energy.”
Citizens, we must NOT stop overseeing this process. We need to make sure what is done is best for Jasper County. We have to watch to make sure the committee can work independently, away from the influence and oversight of Gene Trammell, Karen Degges and the rest of the BOC. Please try to attend any of the SWC meetings you can.
Please forward to everyone you think should know this information.
Citizens, be informed and stay informed! Only by being informed can the citizens understand what is being done and talked about, and then press our officials to make good decisions for everyone in Jasper County. That is our goal with the Taxdogs blog.