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Supervisors say Brookhaven plan may help ease solid waste woes

A possible city plan to restart landfill operations could be thecounty’s answer to addressing solid waste disposal plans asrequired by state and federal regulations, supervisors learnedMonday.

County Engineer Carl Ray Furr discussed Brookhaven’s plan topossibly purchase land near the old landfill, which was closed morethan 10 years ago but still houses a rubbish disposal operation,and develop the land as a new approved landfill. The goal is topossibly save money on garbage disposal costs.

“They’re looking at the feasibility for Lincoln, Lawrence andmaybe one more county,” said Furr, who is also the city’sengineer.

Furr said Solid Waste consultant Butch Lambert is conducting thestudy to see what it would take for the city to return to operatinga landfill.

“I think that information will be forthcoming pretty soon,” Furrsaid.

Furr’s comments came during a board discussion with CharlesBurke, the county’s representative on a regional solid wasteauthority, regarding a solid waste plan adopted about 10 years toaddress garbage disposal issues. Burke said state Department ofEnvironmental Quality officials had expressed concerns about theplan not being followed by area counties and municipalities.

“Nothing’s been done about this plan,” Burke told supervisors.”We’ve not done anything the law says we’re supposed to do.”

Burke said an authority plan to develop and operate a regionallandfill would have been more expensive than individual countiesand cities contracting with private disposal services. He indicatedthere was not enough garbage volume generated in the area tojustify the regional landfill.

Burke said DEQ officials were planning a meeting for early nextyear to discuss the area’s solid waste plan.

The representative said it would behoove the county to decidewhether to handle garbage disposal duties or maintain theauthority. Since the regional organization lacks authority, Burkesaid it was difficult to get a quorum and hold meetings.

“We have no authority, so nobody’s interested in it,” Burkesaid.

With the city’s possible landfill plans, Furr said the countyand city could amend the solid waste plan to addressrequirements.

“The county has to take the lead on the plan,” Furr said.

In other business Monday, Lincoln County Sheriff Lynn Boytepresented supervisors with a $45,578 check following a recentforfeiture ruling giving the drug-seized money to the county. Theaddition raises the sheriff’s department’s drug-seized fund accountto over $104,000.

“That can be used for law enforcement purposes only, throughpurchasing laws, with your blessing,” Boyte told supervisors.

Boyte pointed out that the department has been able to purchaseseven patrol cars using drug-seized money over the years. Boytesaid another approximately $255,000 and 62 acres of land areawaiting final forfeiture rulings before coming to the county.

The sheriff said more law enforcement agencies are starting totake advantage of drug-seized fund efforts.

“A lot of your agencies are in the same shape we’re in,” Boytesaid. “They’re trying to figure out where their next dollar iscoming from.”

Also Monday, board attorney Bob Allen advised supervisorsagainst a plan to allow King’s Daughters Medical Center’s ambulanceservice from accepting a ambulance from a private company inexchange for advertising space on the vehicle.

Allen said the county had tried a similar approach withsheriff’s department vehicle but found no legal authority to allow.He also cited certification operational conflicts in the ambulanceagreement.

Allen said the state legislature would need to enact a law toallow counties and cities to utilize the ambulance agreements.