By Susan Redden
Globe Staff Writer
CARTHAGE, Mo. - The Jasper County Commission on Thursday promised it would prosecute any violations concerning setback requirements for a landfill proposed for an area north of Purcell.
The commissioners, during a regular meeting, distributed copies of a letter to be sent to officials of Enviro-Site Management, operators of the proposed landfill.
The county has decided that the landfill falls under requirements of a law that calls for sites such as junkyards and similar operations to be set back from state roads by 200 feet or surrounded by a board fence at least 10 feet high.
Craig Post, president of Enviro-Site, said at a public meeting last week on the landfill that the design includes a setback of about 158 feet, and that the company has no plans for revisions. Post contended that the statute does not apply to landfills.
Thursday's letter, signed by Presiding Commissioner Chuck Surface and Prosecuting Attorney Dean Dankelson, noted that the county has requested compliance with the 200-foot setback and has discussed the request with the regional office of the Missouri Department of Transportation, which is in charge of enforcement of the statue.
"Be advised that when MO-Dot advises the county of a violation, we will proceed to remedy the situation in court," the letter read.
Neighbors who oppose the landfill, planned for a site at Route M and County Road 210, packed an informational meeting on the proposal a week ago. Charimonde Heger, a member of Citizens for Environmental Safety, said the group will meet Tuesday to draft questions and comments to be submitted in the wake of the meeting.
"We don't feel like we got any of our questions answered at the session," she said.
Opponents have battled the proposed landfill for more than 10 years, arguing that burying trash there would endanger underground water supplies and surface water depended on by farmers and others in the region.
Enviro-Site was formed by Advantage Waste Services, a Springfield company that earlier this year purchased the landfill site from Allied Waste Inc. The state still is reviewing applications by the company seeking approval of the ownership transfer and modifications to the landfill permit that was issued years ago, said Jim Bell, with the solid-waste division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
He said he expects action on the ownership issue within the next 30 days.
"It takes longer to review the technical materials associated with a permit modification," he said. "And, the change of ownership will have to come before the permit modifications. They can't modify what they don't own."
The landfill is proposed to cover 107 acres on a 640-acre site just north of Purcell.
By Susan Redden
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