Chiquita Canyon landfill expansion plans will be discussed Thursday night at the Castaic Sports Complex, giving Santa Clarita Valley residents having a chance to express concern or support for the proposed expansion landfill’s project.
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The landfill‘s proposal, which would double the waste footprint of the facility, has come under criticism from Val Verde residents living near the dump.
One Val Verde association claimed dozens have complained, while another group considered the landfill “a good neighbor.”
“It’s very clear (Val Verde residents) do not want this expansion to happen,” said Ramon Hamilton, member of the Val Verde Civic Association, noting the association, a small group of area residents chosen by election, hasn’t taken an official stance.
The group is in the middle of confidential negotiations with Chiquita Canyon officials regarding compensation for the inconvenience residents would face if the plan is approved.
The landfill is located outside city of Santa Clarita limits about three miles west of the intersection of Interstate 5 and Highway 126.
A previous agreement between the landfill and the VVCA resulted in the group getting several hundred thousand dollars a year to support community-based senior and after-school programs, Hamilton said, noting the exact sunset date for the previous deal is also being discussed.
“It’s absolutely incorrect to say (the VVCA) has a stance, but we’re still in the process of getting information,” Hamilton said. “The residents of Val Verde have expressed in large numbers to the VVCA that, by and large, they do not want to see the expansion happen.”
However, the battle against the Chiquita Canyon landfill is an “extremely uphill” one, he said, and the goal of the association is to help area residents as much as possible.
“If we can’t stop this expansion that most of the people are expressing they don’t want,” Hamilton said, “then we want to at least make sure that Val Verde residents are compensated for this inconvenience.”
Vanessa Brookman, president of the Val Verde Community Advisory Committee, an appointed group of area residents named by county Supervisor Michael Antonovich, says the VVCAC will maintain a neutral stance, but the group does consider the landfill a good neighbor.
The VVCAC has noted an uptick in complaint calls since the landfill’s environmental impact study has been circulated, she said.
The Air Quality Management District logged 16 complaints from Val Verde residents in all of 2013, according to an official. There were 18 complaints in just the first three weeks of July 2014.
A Chiquita Canyon spokesman said the landfill makes several efforts to lessen the impact for nearby residents.
“It starts with keeping the working face (where trucks can actually deliver trash) very small,” said John Musella, spokesman for Chiquita Canyon, noting that area is 100 feet by 100 feet.
The landfill also covers its trash at night to help lessen the odor, and when the air is still, there are fans to help disperse the scent. There’s also an odor-neutralizing system at the top of a lengthy fence surrounding the facility, he said.
Residents seeking to leave a public comment can do so at tonight’s meeting, or submit it in writing.
Officials ask for written comments on the DEIR to be addressed to Iris Chi of the Department of Regional Planning at County of Los Angeles/ Department of Regional Planning Zoning Permits North Section, Room 1348, 320 West Temple Street in Los Angeles, CA at 90012.
You may also fax your written comments to (213) 626-0434, or email to email@example.com. Should you have any questions, please call (213) 974-6443.
Val Verde residents can also call 877-231-1443 to contact the VVCAC, or drop off correspondence in a sealed envelope at the Val Verde Community Center to reach the VVCA.
Do you have a news tip? Call us at (661) 298-1220, or drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: Santa Clarita News