04/05/05 — Duplin reaches tentative waste deal

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Duplin reaches tentative waste deal

By Bonnie Edwards
Published in News on April 5, 2005 1:48 PM

KENANSVILLE -- Duplin County commissioners have reached a preliminary agreement with Waste Industries to accept the county's solid waste at a landfill in Sampson County.

But not everyone on the board of commissioners is happy with the outcome, which leaves open the possibility of a subsidiary of the company building a landfill in Duplin.

The commissioners voted 5-1 on Monday to approve the 10-year agreement with Waste Industries on its first reading. State law requires the board to vote a second time to make the deal final. The commissioners' next meeting is April 18.

"This would save $600 a day," said Commissioner David Fussell, who seconded the motion made by Commissioner Zettie Williams to approve the agreement. "It's unthinkable not to welcome this wonderful gift they're giving us."

That is not the way Commissioner L.S. Guy of Faison sees it.

Guy cast the dissenting vote, saying he wanted the commissioners to know more about the possible effects of signing the deal before making a decision. Some residents of the northern part of the county, where a landfill has been proposed, are against having one built in the area.

"In all probability, they would continue to push for a regional landfill in Duplin County," Guy said. "I couldn't support it under any conditions."

Guy asked Ven Poole of Waste Industries if he would agree to include in the contract a statement that the company is not interested in pursuing a landfill in Duplin.

Poole said he was not willing to do that.

"A regional landfill has always been your best option," said Poole. "But if the county is not ready to host a regional landfill, this option has always been on the table," he said, referring to the 10-year contract to receive the waste in Sampson.

The company's subsidiary that is entering the contract with the county, Sampson County Disposal LLC, wants exclusive rights to receive the county's garbage.

But Waste Industries has another subsidiary, Duplin County Disposal, LLC, which has threatened to sue the county over a proposal to locate a landfill in northern Duplin, on land owned by the Anderson family on Emmett Jackson Road. The family has also threatened to sue.

Poole said state environmental officials have told him the property is the best location in the county for a landfill.

"The timing of this is what blew me away," said Guy. "Duplin LLC is a subsidiary of Waste Industries. I'm negotiating with you over here and being threatened by you over here. I cannot conceive of a county commissioner not seeing the connection."