Landfill’s owners seek OK to accept solid waste

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 12, 2002

The owners of a long-disputed landfill in south Warren County are seeking permission from the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality to begin accepting solid waste at the site off Jeff Davis Road.

A public hearing with DEQ has been set for 7 p.m. Jan. 16 at Battlefield Inn to accept comment about the W.T. Ewell Sanitary Landfill owned by Warren County Waste Disposal Inc.

The owners are Betty Ewell, the wife of W.T. Ewell who died this year, and attorney Paul Kelly Loyacono. They are seeking permission to develop the 10-acre site off Jeff Davis Road first given a permit in 1986.

“We believe this is a growing area and sooner or later there will be a need for it, and we’ll be ready,” Loyacono said.

No landfills operating in Warren County are classed as “Subtitle D” and eligible to accept household garbage. Warren County’s waste is trucked to facilities in either Monroe or Natchez under a 10-year deal with Waste Management Inc.

If approved by the state, a process that includes various environmental and legal hurdles, the owners could begin building on the site to accept household garbage. Loyacono said they have no plans or contracts in place with haulers.

“We’re just going one step at a time,” Loyacono said.

Under the terms of its agreement with Warren County, Waste Management can contract with a local landfill for disposal. Doing so could lower Waste Management’s expenses by reducing the cost of hauling garbage to other landfills.

In 1996, Billy Ewell sued the county after supervisors denied a public hearing required before the 10-acre site already permitted on the property could be expanded. That step is not needed for the 10-acre site to be developed.

Before 1990, Warren County owned and operated two landfills. Both were sealed in anticipation of new federal standards for disposal.

Two years ago, when the city and county were seeking a new contract for disposal, the landfill on Jeff Davis Road and a proposal to develop one off U.S. 61 North brought much public criticism.

Warren County Waste Disposal Inc., also operates a rubbish landfill off Jeff Davis Road, which takes yard waste and construction debris, but not household waste. Until a month ago when the city began a new contract for garbage collection within the municipal limits, all yard waste from inside the city was taken to that site.

Under a new contract with Waste Management, residents can mix rubbish with household garbage and it is taken to the same landfill.

Outside the city, residents contract with various haulers for garbage collection which is taken to the Waste Management transfer station on U.S. 61 South.