Petition to Town of Ellery Elected Officials regarding the Chautauqua County Landfill Expansion 2013:
As concerned residents of the Town of Ellery, Chautuaqua County and surrounding areas we hereby petition you, the Town of Ellery Elected Officials, to stand by your statement of position on the planned Chautauqua County Landfill expansion. We demand that through mitigation (either by negotiation or adjudication, whichever is necessary), with the County you will seek to protect and preserve the health, welfare and character of our community and the environment for us, and for future generations.
We feel that a conflict of interest has arisen by which Chautauqua County is responsible to keep the landfill it owns profitable in order to supplement County revenue, and keep landfill operations funded. Which in turn perpetuates and furthers its expansion. This is done by taking in waste from outside of the county (40%) in order to achieve positive cash flow . It has proven to be a vicious cycle that occurs at the expense of its own residents, in many ways seen and unseen. Will the benefits of this massive expansion eventually TRULY outweigh the risks? As we all know the Landfill was originated to consolidate waste generated within our own County, period.
Citizen areas of concern for mitigation with Chautauqua County include (not limited to):
1. Require Chautauqua County to address the feasibility of using more methane resources to generate needed revenue for its operations, rather than continue to increase waste taken in from areas outside of the county to balance its books. The methane produced by the landfill at its current stage will last many, many years. There is no need to keep taking in more waste from outside areas, and expanding, producing more methane, and so on, and so on, and so forth.
2. Require Chautauqua County to have in place safeguards that ensure capture of all leachate material so that it is never released into the Cassadaga Creek watershed which ultimately provides drinking water to the entire Jamestown NY service area, and those individuals downstream as new larger watersheds develop. This should also be done to protect the private water wells of citizens surrounding the landfill from contamination, and future erosion of property.
3. Require Chautauqua County to strictly protect residents in the landfill area from emitted odors and dust - Methane does not have an odor, therefore, periodic complaints by residents of odor are likely due to decomposing matter which is known to contain severely hazardous non-methane organic compounds (NMOC’s). These compounds can cause many acute and chronic health conditions and odor complaints should be taken very seriously.
4. Require Chautuaqua County to address landfill truck traffic and speed in a practical and strict manner - Trucks over a specified tonnage should be given their own specified speed limit when traveling on direct routes within close proximity to the landfill. Changing the speed limit on Bemus-Ellery road has only punished local residents, and shifted the trucks to alternate routes with higher speed limits.
5. Require Chautauqua County to amend its current Solid Waste Management Plan to accept only waste that has met rigorous mandatory recycling requirements prior to bringing it into the landfill.
6. Require Chautauqua County to scale back its current expansion to an acceptable level that does not include such an adverse visual impact on local and surrounding areas. No one wants see the landfill in its panorama. The landfill is located closely to the direct center of the County and if allowed to expand to its planned height of 1850’ it will be visible not only to locals, but Lakewood, Chautauqua Institution, and other areas as well. Not a view to be proud of.
7. Require Chautauqua County to protect on site and other surrounding natural resources, including known endangered species.
8. Require that Chautauqua County commit to never apply for permit, or contract to accept hazardous radioactive waste from any industry into the landfill now or at any time in the future.
9. Require Chautauqua County set forth a plan to guarantee, maintain, and sustain the property values of those residents immediately surrounding the landfill who are impacted by its operations.
We would also ask that the Town of Ellery use information from the property tax roll rather than voter registration information in any future mailings regarding the landfill or other important business. Many people own property in the Town of Ellery that do not reside here full time, and therefore are not registered to vote here. Hence they are left unaware of issues that may directly impact them, and their property.
Our plea has been stated, we expect that you will use the power and ability granted to you as elected public officials for the greater good of all. Thank you.
Town of Ellery Statement of Position on Chautauqua County Landfill Expansion:
Town of Ellery Letter regarding expansion:
Environmental Impact Survey for residents regarding Landfill expansion:
Citizens Must speak out regarding landfill expansion
Chautauqua County Legislators Contact List
Chautauqua County Legislature District Map
ELLERY — Chautauqua County generates garbage, and it needs to go somewhere.