County commission tables MASWU amendment

By Chris Swick
October 26, 2015

A proposal brought forth by the McPherson Area Solid Waste Utility to allow McPherson County contractors to bring special waste from outside of the county to the McPherson County Landfill D was met with questions from both the McPherson County Commission and members of the public Monday.

The proposal to amend the agreement between the utility and the county to allow out-of-county special waste was first brought before the board during their meeting Oct. 12. Ted Morris owns property nearby the landfill on 14thAvenue and had several questions about the proposal.

“Where does it end?” Morris said. “Who makes the decision? Is this an accommodation of industry and contractors of McPherson County?”

Commissioner Ron Loomis tried to allay Morris's fears by pointing out that the most common usage would be for small spills of waste like petroleum, which doesn't fall under the hazardous waste label as long as the spill is small enough. The companies would also either have to be based in McPherson County or have business in the county, like a contractor doing work at CHS Refinery at McPherson.

“We're not opening it up to Ebert Construction [of Wamego],” Loomis said. “It's only for companies in the county that have subsidiaries in adjacent counties.”

The commission did recommend some changes to the proposed amendment, which includes making sure that the agreement was limited to adjacent counties, such as Rice, and that one paragraph have the words hazardous waste changed to special waste, as hazardous waste wasn't accepted at the landfill anyway.

The solid waste utility executive board will take up the changes at a future meeting. Both boards have to approve the resolution unanimously.