Extension granted on trash transfer plan Waste to be stored at landfill until station is constructed

July 03, 1998|By Donna R. Engle | Donna R. Engle,SUN STAFF

Carroll County missed a deadline last week to provide a building where county trash will await transfer to an incinerator, but the state agency that set the deadline isn't cutting off the trash flow.

The Maryland Department of the Environment will allow the county to continue until Sept. 30 to place trash atop the landfill near Reese until it can be trucked to a York, Pa., incinerator.

In May 1997, the county signed a five-year contract with Waste Management Inc. of Oak Brook, Ill., for it to transport Carroll's refuse to the incinerator. At the time, county officials predicted it would take about six months to build an enclosure, called a transfer station, to hold trash from the time it is dropped off by local haulers until it is loaded for transport to the incinerator.

One year later, construction has begun on a road to the planned transfer station, and dirt is being moved and compacted, but a contractor has not started work on the building.

"We expect, hope, believe [the station will be finished] sometime before the first of September," said Gary Horst, deputy county public works director.

MDE doesn't see any environmental problems in the county parking trash on top of the landfill, said spokesman Quentin W. Banks. "What they're doing can't go on forever, but they're making progress, and we're extending" the deadline, he said.

Banks said the aesthetics of trash lying in the open probably are more serious than any environmental impact. MDE officials said the extension could be revoked if environmental problems develop.

Construction of the $1.1 million, 20,000-square-foot transfer station has been delayed by paperwork rather than construction or weather problems, Horst said. "Our own internal review agencies couldn't get it done," he said.

Space in the transfer station will be divided between trash awaiting transport to the incinerator and recyclables.

Partners Quality Recycling Service Inc., which began handling county recyclables under a contract that started Wednesday, will use the transfer station to sort paper, but will take bottles and cans to its Baltimore plant for processing.

Monty Davison, Partners general manager, said the delay on the transfer station hasn't posed problems other than the additional expense of transporting paper from the landfill to Baltimore's processing plant. When the station is completed, paper will go directly to paper mills.

"So far, it's been very smooth," Davison said.

Pub Date: 7/03/98

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