Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Thursday, July 31, 2008

"Kopf rezone gets 2-1 okay"

Here's a follow-up to the earlier story about the Kopf landfill rezone from today's Whitman County Gazette:
County Commissioners Monday voted two-to-one to approve the rezoning of land owned by Williams Place, LLC., for an industrial landfill in the Pullman-Moscow Corridor. The decision was delayed last week when commissioners Michael Largent and Jerry Finch requested more information and time to visit the site.

The rezone will double Williams Place’s existing landfill for construction debris such as sand, rock and asphalt. The 20 rezoned acres are located on the north side of the highway.

Gary Kopf, Williams Place CEO, last week said the fill would be dumped into a canyon between two hills just north of Highway 270. Kopf estimated all 40 acres of the landfill would be capped in 10 to 15 years. The original 40 acres was split into two sections and the northern one is already in use as a landfill.

Kopf was present for Monday’s vote. Jeff Motley of Pullman, who last week objected to the rezone because he believed it would deter commercial development, was not present Monday.

After last week’s delay, Commissioner Finch visited the site. At the public hearing prior to the decision Monday, Finch asked how the dumping would be monitored. Kopf said the operational program requires each load be weighed and monitored and the site monitored daily. Williams Place will have an environmental survey done with monthly visits and monitoring. They will hold the leasee responsible for what goes into the landfill, he said. Whitman County Environmental Health will also monitor the site.

Finch was the lone opposing vote, noting there was already space available that the company was not using.

“Until the north side is filled, I felt the south side wasn’t necessary,” he told the Gazette.

Kopf said following the rezone he will pursue an expansion of a conditional use permit for the landfill.

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