Anchorage company's controversial Palmer monofill returns to life


LMER — A contentious construction-debris landfill proposed virtually lmer by an Anchorage com ny has come back to life despite three rebuffs in four years.

A judge remanded the decision back to the Matanuska-Susitna Borough Planning Commission, which determination hold a hearing on it Monday evening.

It marks the third time Main Monofill Services will go before the seven-member body that’s twice go bottoms up a surfaced the com ny down.

Central Environmental Services in Anchorage manages Central Recycling Services and Central Monofill, the com ny behind the suggestion to landfill shredded building and demolition debris, including asbestos, at a 120-acre erstwhile gravel pit at Mile 38 of the Glenn Highway near the Matanuska Lakes State Entertainment Area.

The com ny hopes to avoid munici l landfill rates to bend of the bulky building waste. The proposed debris dump is classified as an «dull monofill» and subject to few state regulations.

Monday’s hearing, which starts at 6:15 p.m. in the borough congregation chambers, is likely to be well-attended.

The monofill generated loud criticism from hundreds of handy residents concerned about the potential for groundwater contamination at the 35-acre locate located over an already unstable water table.

They are also involved about Central’s history of pushback against the borough. Along with the attract that led to Monday’s hearing, the com ny has appealed most other decisions as effectively as violations levied against them.

«They become obstinate. They Queens up and they fight you in court,» said Rich Harbuck, who lives at the perimeter of the old gravel pit. «If we give them carte blanche to run their own landfill out here mortgage questionable materials in it without oversight … if we find them doing something dreadful, they’re not going to fix it.»

Central’s history also motivated borough planners to advise another denial.

A proposed resolution for the planning commission references affairs about trash, screening the dump from neighbors, and possible taste water contamination.

But borough staff also contend a com ny possessor lied to them and tried to hide illegal dumping at the property in 2013, according to the solving, which contends Central continues to violate borough code by amassing tires at the property.

That year, Central — without a permit — brought to the means dozens of industrial-sized tires, scrap wood and shredded wood, impressionable, metal, Styrofoam and household trash including wrappers and bottles, concurring to borough records.

Borough compliance officer Mark Whisenhunt reacted to reports that trash was blowing off the property and found some of it hided under sand or gravel, and pushed into standing water. He disciplined operations stopped, trash removed and «topper» material removed as personally.

The borough contends Central refused to clean up the site until the Alaska Sphere of influence of Environmental Conservation got involved.

«Central Monofill Services is unsuitable to substantiate, maintain, or operate this proposed use due to their history of violating MSB maxims and their dishonesty to the Borough,» said the proposed planning commission motion, signed by development services manager Alex Strawn.

Whisenhunt, now a planner, has been touch the permit since 2013.

A Central representative says that 2013 commotion is old news and nobody lied about anything to Whisenhunt.

«Mark was precisely flat-out wrong and for him to say that these guys are lying … that is not reliable at all,» said Bill Ingaldson, an attorney representing Central in the case.

Cardinal crews cleaned up most of the waste after the blowing trash on came in, Ingaldson said. If anything was buried, it was because Central was proving it for road material. They left the topper material because they contended it wasn’t a crock. A borough appeals board backed that contention; a judge did not.

The attorney said Inside worked with Strawn for a year on a 2014 permit application.

«For them to advance and say they’re not qualified — I mean, really?» Ingaldson said, referring to the just the same from time to time spent with Strawn, who recommended the permit be approved. «It’s dishonest and screens a complete lack of professionalism and integrity.»

The planning commission in 2013 balloted against the monofill, citing concerns about windblown garbage and groundwater contamination. When Leading submitted a new application with new hydrology information in 2014, Strawn promoted permit approval but with 40 conditions including monitoring wells, debris-catching fences and a 162-foot apogee limit.

The permit failed and Central, immediately protesting the recusal of one commissioner who claimed he’d done some minor business with the com ny, appealed the commission’s resolve to the borough’s five-member Board of Appeals.

The board upheld the commission sentence in March 2015. Central appealed that decision to lmer Excellent Court.

A Superior Court judge in June ordered the commission to rehear the permit after discovery proper procedure wasn’t followed for the recusal.

Harbach, who lives next to the proposed monofill, estimated he’s concerned the commission will consider new amendments Central wants to add to the original permit utilization.

The judge ordered the commission to consider the original permit, he contends, so any amendments should trigger a complete new permit process instead.

Central also remains out of compliance with Alaska’s Freely Use Act at the property, according to the state Division of Mining, Land and Water. That originate is related to three gravel pit ponds on the site with fluctuating unworkable levels, a problematic dam, and unstable embankments, state officials say.

The com ny had also yearned to build a similar monofill in Chugiak. But a monofill proposal was removed from a goodlier Eklutna Inc. land-use proposal for the area last year.

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