Ledford refutes firm's claim of any landfill 'partnership'

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

proposal to develop a landfill at Cornersville and it stems from different interpretations of a brainstorming session in December.

That's when Marshall County's Solid Waste Committee continued to brainstorm over where to send garbage when the landfill at Lewisburg is full. Depending on deliveries and a state decision on expansion, it could be full in six years, or less.

The words "partner" and "partnership" are at the root of this latest dispute.

The reason given by Waste Management to request permission for a landfill site at Cornersville to succeed its Cedar Ridge Landfill at Lewisburg is from the brainstorming session. However, according to County Commissioner Don Ledford, chairman of the committee that conducted the session, the discussion doesn't support a conclusion that a "partnership" was accepted.

Last week, Ledford wrote to "correct the erroneous information" implied on March 20 when Waste Management Market Area Vice President Tim Wells requested county approval of a landfill site on Pulaski Highway between downtown Cornersville and the Tennessean Truckstop.

"This request comes as a result of the ... Solid Waste Committee's request to partner with Waste Management in the search" for a new landfill site, Wells wrote.

Apparently, Ledford doesn't see the county as a partner with Waste Management.

"If, by chance, Waste Management personnel informed you we were ready to proceed with a partnership concept, they did not understand the purpose of the meetings," Ledford wrote on April 1 to Wells. "If a Solid Waste Committee member gave you this information, he spoke out of turn and was not speaking in an official capacity representing our committee."

Waste Management spokeswoman Terri Douglas and Robert Cheney, the company's business development manager, on Monday said they would provide statements from the company to comment on Ledford's letter to Wells.

"We don't understand the letter," Cheney said. "A specific request was made of us in December and we are responding to that...PICK UP A COPY TODAY'S EDITION OF THE TRIBUNE FOR FULL COVERAGE.