The DEP will make its decision on whether to permit the landfill's construction after a public hearing later this year, a department representative said.
By VIRGINIA ROSS
MEADVILLE, Pa. -- Sechan Limestone Industries has made official its proposal to construct a residual waste landfill near McConnell's Mill State Park and Slippery Rock Creek.
On Tuesday, more than a year after he introduced his plan to area officials, Robert Sechan filed an application with the Department of Environmental Protection's Northwest Regional Office in Meadville.
The application, which is necessary to obtain a permit to construct the landfill, specified Sechan's intentions to build a 91-acre nonhazardous residual waste landfill in Lawrence and Butler counties.
Coverage: The proposed landfill's disposal area would cover between 50 and 55 acres. Ten to 15 percent of that area is in Slippery Rock Township, Lawrence County; the remainder is in Butler County's Muddy Creek Township.
"This is the first step as far as the department is concerned," Freda Tarbell, a DEP representative, said in response to Sechan's filing of the application.
"Mr. Sechan has had several pre-application conferences with the department to learn and fully understand what is expected and what he will need to do to meet department requirements."
Tarbell explained the application covers two areas including a site criteria and environmental assessment. Sechan must also provide to the DEP a design, construction and operation plan for the proposed landfill.
Tarbell said that within the next few weeks DEP staff will review the application to make sure all maps, drawings and forms have been submitted. A conference with Sechan or his representatives, DEP staff and area municipal officials will be conducted, probably later this month, she noted.
State Rep. Frank LaGrotta announced Tuesday his intentions to conduct a meeting with local officials before that conference. He said the purpose of that meeting is to coordinate opposition to the landfill.
Concerns: Opponents of the landfill say they are concerned about waste infiltrating the park and creek, which is a water source for southern Lawrence County.
Sechan representatives have said the proposed landfill would not include hazardous waste. Residual waste landfills accept things including ceramics, contaminated soil, pharmaceutical waste and pesticides.
Tarbell said the DEP will decide whether to approve or reject the permit application after a public hearing later this year.
She said individuals interested in charting the progress of the application can register with eNOTICE -- a system that notifies interested parties via email of each step that has been taken in the process. To register, log onto www.dep.state.pa.us and choose the DEP eNOTICE option.