Tuesday, January 8th, 2019
Local landfill's life extended to 2021
Site originally had been expected to run out of space in 2018
By William Kincaid
CELINA - The Celina Sanitary Landfill, which not too long ago had been projected to run out of available space in 2018, has had its life extended by a least a few more years due to a new compaction method, officials said.
In July 2017, then-facility operations manager Adam Burleson had expected the landfill to be maxed out within a year's time.
However, since then, operators have up with a new compaction method, opening up additional space, Mercer County Solid Waste District Coordinator Kent Hinton told the newspaper.
"The landfill had a different way of operating, and they have enough capacity now to go until June 20 of 2021," Hinton said.
Nathan Taylor, an engineer with Republic Services Inc., which owns the landfill, confirmed the landfill has additional capacity allowing operation until June 20, 2021.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency on Aug. 14 issued a final solid waste permit to install to the landfill, authorizing a vertical expansion of about 145,557 cubic yards of airspace on the west and center cell area of the landfill, according to OEPA documents.
"The owner/operator will forgo 323,517 (cubic yards) airspace previously approved in the 2006 (Permit to Install) on the east side of the landfill and leave the existing cap from the 1994 permit in place," the permit summary states. "The proposed expansion volume will provide disposal service for approximately 4.12 years at the average gate waste receipt of 52,000 tons/year or 1.65 years at the current (Authorized Maximum Daily Waste Receipt) of 499 tons/day."
The site on Depweg Road opened in 1971 and stands at about 1,000 feet above sea level. It has had a final cap placed over about half of the acreage since the early 2000s. The remaining half will be capped after the landfill is closed, Burleson had previously told the newspaper, describing the cap as "a layer of compacted clay, a geo-synthetic liner, a drainage layer and then a vegetative layer, which promotes vegetation."
Waste disposal companies using the site pay tipping fees to the Mercer County Solid Waste District at a rate of $2 per ton for Mercer County and out-of-state trash and $4 per ton for Ohio out-of-county trash. Interstate commerce laws and an Ohio Supreme Court ruling prohibit charging more for out-of-state waste.
The tipping fees pay for the solid waste district, which has an annual budget of about $100,000, Hinton said. The district carries out several duties, including a recycling program, a hazardous waste pickup, education and awareness and other special programs and events.
It also provides financial assistance to the health board for solid waste enforcement and collecting and analyzing samples from water wells adjacent to the landfill.
County officials are updating the 15-year solid waste plan for 2020-2034 that must be approved by OEPA.
The current plan states that if tipping fees were to end due to the closing of the landfill, one option to generate funds to pay for the solid waste district would include charging an apportionment fee to villages, townships and the city of Celina based on their populations.
Should tipping fees end, local governments would be charged $2.40 per person within their boundaries, according to Hinton.
"If our landfill closes we have it passed and ratified with the (local governments) that they will pay (in) proportion to their population," Hinton said. "The new plan is changing."
Under the updated plan draft, the contingent plan for funding "as a last resort mechanism to completely or partially fund the operation of the district" would include any of the following mechanisms: generation fees; contract fees through designation; rates and charges; contracts with communities, facilities or other entities; and any other viable funding mechanism available to the district.
County commissioners set a public hearing on the draft plan update for 11 a.m. Feb. 12 at the Mercer County Central Services Building in Celina.