MAYVILLE – The expansion effort of the Chautauqua County Landfill will be moving forward.
On Wednesday night the legislature unanimously approved the expansion’s State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) Statement and also approved borrowing $18 million to pay for the cost of the expansion. The bonding would be paid for with revenue collected at the landfill.
With the action, the 53-acre expansion is just about ready to get underway, although it is still being met with resistance by the town of Ellery, where the landfill is located. The town has voiced concern over the environmental impact the landfill would continue have on residents and is asking the county to provide a hosting fee. The Ellery Town Board is also considering a local law that would prohibit the expansion effort if a hosting arrangement can not be worked out.
Following Wednesday’s vote, Chautauqua County executive Vince Horrigan said he and the legislature have discussed a pending hosting agreement with Ellery officials, which will be presented to them on Thursday.
“My hope is that together we can move forward,” Horrigan said. “[The landfill] is a tremendous asset for the county, it does provide very low rates and helps us with the tax levy and its a very successful program. I’m pleased to see it move forward.”
EXPANSION LIKELY TO START IN 2016
County Landfill director Pantelis Panteli said that barring any unforeseen delays, the landfill expansion could get underway by the spring or summer of 2016. He told WRFA following Wednesday’s meeting that the next step is to draw up RFPs for the project and begin the bidding process for a contractor. Pantelis also said once a contractor has been selected and the project gets underway, it could take 2 to 3 years before the expansion is complete.
If no expansion took place, the current landfill would reach full capacity within 4 to 5 years, if it continued to accept waste at the current rate of about 408,000 tons per year. Once the expansion is completed, the landfill will be able to continue accepting waste at its current rate for an additional 20 years.