County finally resolves waste site ownership issue
By MEGAN COOPER
Mt. Pleasant News
Finally, Henry County has a solid waste site it can call its own.
Henry County Board of Supervisors, during its regular meeting, reported the county received news via email that they will be able to keep their solid waste site. In previous years, the board has had issues concerning this site.
Four or five years ago, the board obtained the Army Reserve site when it closed. At this time, the board agreed that they could “utilize for county as long as emergency management remained there,” said Shelly Barber, Henry County Auditor.
Soon afterward, the county also obtained the waste site used by a sanitation firm that was going out of business.
The former Army Reserve site, now used by county emergency management also would house old clerk of court documents and those documents would be stored in the basement, but emergency management would remain there as well. These sites were to be used as storage sites and the board was told that this was okay.
FEMA then sent a representative to do an inspection, because FEMA was told that the site wasn’t being used properly. According to FEMA, the county couldn’t use the site for solid waste if emergency management was there. Then, the Government Service Agency (GSA) stated the board could continue to use the site for storage.
Consequently, the board checked into the situation and they found that they might be able to keep the site without purchasing it if they would get it through Public Health, which would satisfy the government’s requirement that the site be used for waste and storage of mental health or health records.
The confirmation received on Thursday, Aug. 15, stated that all the paperwork FEMA has received was accepted and now the board is waiting on the call to say this issue has been cleared up. FEMA’s legal counsel is “happy with final documents,” Barber stated.
The reason the board has been so adamant about this site is because they want to add “power, in order to install compactors, instead of using garbage truck compactors,” Barber said.
The confirmation has been sent to board supervisor Chairman Gary See. If everything goes according to plan, the county will own both pieces of the site, part will be owned by FEMA and the Deparatment of Human Health Services (DHS) will own the other.
Barber made it apparent that the board was quite “happy” about this situation and they are hopeful for this issue to be solved. The board wants to use this site for storage, as it is a huge site with lots of unused space the additional space could be utilized as well.
In other board news, board Vice Chairman, Marc Lindeen, said that for the county, “all annual dues to RUSS are due on Oct. 1. Any payments received after that date will result in a penalty.” Some counties have been paying late, so this date should allow for payments to be received on time. RUSS serves 10 counties in the area.
The state auditor, in order to save money, has deemed that board announcements will only be in one paper from now on, which will be the Mt. Pleasant News.
The board meets again Tuesday, Aug. 20 at 9 a.m.