County looks at options
Union County may keep the Sun Valley landfill operational, by raising the cost to deposit trash there. During their Monday, Sept. 5 meeting, county commissioners heard from staff members about the reasons involved with shutting down the facility and asked for more information.
“We were losing $443,000 annually at our dropoff sites (before the changes),” County Manager Cindy Coto told commissioners, adding that with the changes, the deficit dropped to $98,000 a year. “We’re still operating at a deficit, but not as great,” Coto said.
During budget discussions this year, county commissioners decided to close down some of the landfill facilities in operation. They reached an agreement with the towns of Unionville and New Salem to keep the New Salem facility, 7910 N.C. 218, operational on Saturdays. That facility, starting Oct. 1, will only be running between 7 a.m and 7 p.m on Saturdays. Additionally, all bags weighing more than 13 gallons will now cost 50 cents as opposed to the original cost of 25 cents.
The county failed however to reach an agreement with Indian Trail to keep the Sun Valley site, 1407 Wesley Chapel Road, going.
“I think we need to explore a way to keep that site open,” County Commission Vice Chair Todd Johnson said, pointing to the multiple calls and emails commissioners have received as evidence the public uses the facility.
“People have said to me, if you shut this down, it’s a tax increase,” fellow county commissioner Kim Rogers said, explaining that some people can’t afford the cost for curbside pick up.
“This is really a municipal function now,” Public Works Director Ed Goscicki said. “(Sun Valley) is within municipal limits. We approached Indian Trail, but Indian Trail provides curbside collection to their residents. They were interested (only) in using it as an enhanced recycling facility.”
Goscicki said in order to keep it open, the cost per bag would have to rise to 75 cents. Commissioners asked staff to verify that raising the cost per bag to 75 cents would be enough to break even on cost and bring that information to their next meeting in two weeks.