Citation brings garbage clean up

Published 6:00 am Thursday, December 18, 2003

Brookhaven and private solid waste company officials say theyare keeping a closer watch on operations at the garbage transferstation after the facility was cited for litter-related violationslast month.

Following a site inspection at the station on County Farm Road,state Department of Environmental Quality officials sent the city aNotice of Violation, said Mayor Bill Godbold. The mayor said thenotice cited spill over litter on the ground and litter build upalong walls of the facility.

Brookhaven and Lincoln County own the transfer station and leaseit to Waste Management, which subleases the facility to CustomEcology Incorporated (CEI), of Walker, La., for day-to-dayoperations. Godbold said the companies had been notified and haveresponded to the DEQ letter concerns.

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“They know about it and are taking care of it,” Godbold said.”It’s been cleared up since then.”

Godbold said the city had not yet made a written response to theDEQ letter. Solid waste consultant Butch Lambert is working withthe city and Waste Management in drafting a response.

“It’s being handled expeditiously and satisfactorily,” Lambertsaid in discussing the situation during Tuesday’s boardmeeting.

Randy Clark, site manager for Waste Management, expressedsimilar comments. Following the notice, Clark said CEI sent a crewto Brookhaven to clean up the facility and remove the litter.

“I believe we’re on the right track,” Clark said.

Kevin Juneau, CEI vice-president, referred a request for commentto Waste Management.

Clark said the DEQ inspection happened on a particularly windyday.

He said the wind had blown litter out of the garbage truck chuteand onto the ground. Garbage delivered to the transfer station isdumped into a trailer before being carried to a sanitarylandfill.

Clark said wind screens had been placed at the ends of thetrailer chute to reduce blowing litter.

“That’s something we’ve added since the violation,” Clarksaid.

Clark said CEI employees are completing daily facilityinspections and sending the reports to him.

Waste Management officials are conducting periodic site visitsto see that the facility is being run as it should. Clark waspleased with results so far.

“It’s going fine,” Clark said. “It’s being monitored by closelyby our supervisors.”

Godbold said he had been observing operations at the transferstation for several months before the city was written up byDEQ.

“They look to us, and we look to Waste Management,” Godboldsaid.

Godbold said he would like the city to assume control of thetransfer station and develop a landfill. The city and countyearlier this year renewed a three-year lease with Waste Managementfor station operation.

If the city developed a landfill, Lambert said the transferstation could be converted to a recycling center. Godbold said cityoperation of a landfill could greatly reduce the costs of havinggarbage hauled to an approved landfill in southern AdamsCounty.

“Our main cost is transportation,” Godbold said.

For now, in addition to Waste Management’s oversight measures,Godbold said the city will keep a closer eye on transfer stationactivities.

“We are paying more attention now,” Godbold said.