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New Casella application is called for


Public hearings likely in spring


December 26, 2010
SOUTHBRIDGE — Remember the public outcry surrounding the spring 2008 landfill site assignment hearings? Well, this spring may see another round.

At its last meeting, the Board of Health voted to request that landfill operator Casella submit a new application for site assignment of the acreage south of Barefoot Road — the area currently used for construction and demolition processing, hazardous waste collection days and Casella’s big blue building, among other things.

Although those activities have occurred there for years, “Nobody has a copy of the site assignment because it never occurred,” said member Ann Beinema, who charges use of that part of the land has been “built on a pyramid of cards” with no legal foundation.

“The only thing that’s ever been site-assigned was everything north of Barefoot Road,” she said, referring to the landfill itself.

The other acreage, she alleged, is being used improperly based on a series of mistakes and questionable numbers that essentially started with a Board of Health meeting of Nov. 16, 1998. On that date, the board voted to change the name of the site from a “sanitary landfill” to a “solid waste management facility,” but never actually held a public hearing under state law to change its legal function, Beinema claimed.

Health Director James Morin said he and lawyer Mike Scott are working on the request to see how it can be fulfilled correctly because, from Casella’s viewpoint, “they already have a site assignment.”

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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