9-22-15 update: The County board passed the plan to begin organizing "waste designation" which is a county ordinance to force trash haulers to deliver to only the county run processing plant p.272 of 9/22/15 board meeting (yes commissioner Kriesel voted in favor of it and the rest of the purchase package at the 9/22 board meeting. Just going to show his vote on 8-30 over cost concern was purely political pandering. See approval of 9-22-15 County board minutes at the October 20th board meeting.)
Here's where garbage is burned from Washington County:
In Red Wing and in Mankato. Local environmentalist and writer Alan Muller did the math and found over 3 million tons of the most harmful pollutants are put into the air every year from this according to the MPCA. No wonder why this harmful practice is being phased out everywhere... except here. The County weighed no other option and jumped in both feet with this:
8-30 update: The board passed the plan with the buyout of Newport plant for a slightly reduced price of $24.4 million instead of the supposedly "binding" $26.4 million from the two year long arbitration battle in court. RRT and their financier Merced Capital have not responded to state how this was possible. The vote passed 6-1 with Washington County Commissioner Gary Kriesel being the only no vote. Aside from his vote here and on May 28th he's never voted against the plan before ie: funding the over $1.8 million (latest figure) to pay for planning the buyout. Kriesel is up for election in 2016 and always campaigns that he's a fiscally responsible with tax dollars. Also note County Debt has Tripled under Commissioner Kriesel's term with not a word, let alone a plan to do anything but apparently kick the can down the road. So be cautious to interpret these votes as anything more than political pandering. Kriesel has not responded to to inquiry regarding these votes for us.
Also don't forget the real cost of the facility has many strings attached: ie:
***Upfront cost: before anything can begin the RRF needs immediate facility improvements ($6.65 million) to replacing aging equipment and pay for basic renovations. (Under the RRPB document Titled Achieving the Scope through Public or Private Ownership under "Financial Analysis of Options" p. 31 of adobe file)*** (posted this in The $170 Million Dollar Washington/Ramsey County Plan to Take Over Private Sector Garbage Processing)
In June you were informed about the May 28th 7 to 2 vote of the Washington/Ramsey County Resource Recovery Project Board (RRPB) decision to proceed with the take over of garbage processing. That Part 1, article explained a brief history on the Newport Resource Recovery Facility (RRF) that is likely being bought out for $26.4 million tax dollars and the Counties plan to invest in this declining 80s technology. They believe a rebound in trash incineration will occur if they end hauler rebates and replace with a County hauler mandate to deliver garbage to it.
6-23 clarification: Yes, only one company responded to the "question" in the September 2014
Request for Expression of Interest for:
|Experimental small scale technology is what the Counties are banking everything on to phase out incinerating trash.|
It will be an obvious choice for the thousands of residents and dozens and dozens of housing associations in the Counties who will cost compare on what company to use.
to keep their rates flat being unaffected
by the sudden 50%+ increase in
tipping fees caused by the mandate to
use the Newport facility. Doing this by
hauling to their Wisconsin landfill.
to comply with the mandate and pass
the 50%+ increased tipping fee cost
on to their customers.
So either the haulers are going to get slammed with increase tipping fees just like the other government run RRFs or the Counties are refusing to realize their scheme will not only be unable to pay for itself, it'll run massive debt. Leaving tax payers to not only pay for the yearly losses of the Newport facility; but also be stuck paying the $170 million dollar debt.
Part 3: Project Board Chair Fran Miron Responds to Concerns Regarding Trash Processing Facility Buyout