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ENVIRONMENT Campaign continues against landfill



Published: Wed, May 18, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



The citizens group will meet at 7 tonight in Hubbard City Council chambers.

By PEGGY SINKOVICH

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

HUBBARD -- A citizens group is continuing to fight the proposed construction of a landfill off Drummond Avenue.

Hubbard Environmental and Land Preservation is continuing to hold meetings and keep residents informed about the proposed landfill.

Trans Rail America Inc. has proposed to construct a landfill along Drummond Avenue in Hubbard Township. Trans Rail, a Maryland company, is proposing a facility to accept construction and demolition materials on 20.5 acres; it owns 172 acres.

A HELP meeting is scheduled for 7 tonight in Hubbard City Council Chambers.

"It's been quiet during the winter months but we are still keeping up the fight," said Joni Dobran, a member of HELP. "We are not going away until they go away."

Facility delays

The company has a lawsuit pending in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court alleging that township officials are using zoning as a way to block the business from opening.

The suit further states that the area is zoned industrial, which would permit the operation of a construction and demolition debris facility.

Last year trustees informed Trans Rail that the area is zoned light industrial, and if the company wishes to operate a construction and demolition facility it must apply for a zone change to heavy industrial.

The company has also filed an application for a license with the Trumbull County Board of Health. The license is needed so the company can operate the landfill. In October, the health board ruled the application was deficient and incomplete, said Frank Migliozzi of the health department.

"We haven't heard anything from them since that time," Migliozzi said.

Taking action

During tonight's meeting, the group will discuss upcoming fund-raisers and a letter-writing campaign to state officials.

State Sen. Marc Dann of Liberty, D-32nd, and Reps. Sandra Stabile Harwood of Niles, D-65th, and Randy Law of Warren, R-64th, are working together to pass bills designed to exert greater control over companies that accept construction and demolition debris.

The debris is waste created during building, renovation and demolition projects. Current regulation is weak and contributes to environmental and health threats such as ground-water pollution, odors from hydrogen sulfide and underground fires, the three lawmakers have said.

"We are in favor of what they are doing, and we want to let state officials know how we feel," said David Wittenauer, HELP member.

The bills would make Ohio's director of environmental protection establish rules as stringent for construction and demolition debris as are those for solid waste, and would establish stronger rules for choosing the sites of new landfills and for landfills that want to expand. These rules would include background checks, public hearings and financial assurance for cleanup once a facility closed.

sinkovich@vindy.com




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