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Published: Wednesday, 9/21/2011

Lucas County solid-waste plan nixed by Waterville council


Waterville City Council has voted against approval of the Lucas County Solid Waste Management District's draft plan that proposes increasing collections $2 in 2012 to $5.20 per ton on solid waste, and adding a $5-per-year assessment on homes and businesses in 2014.

"The county's plan is a raw deal for Waterville and will continue the deterioration of Lucas County," said Mayor Derek Merrin. "The plan will increase recycling costs and implement a new tax. I will not sign off on a bad plan due to being cajoled by the dangling of potential grants. It's a matter of principle."

Also voting no was Councilman Mike Metzger.

"I take issue with the procedure in which this item was brought before the Waterville council. In effect it was passed before the Waterville Council even saw it. Once the larger municipality had voted on it, Waterville became so much extra poundage. While I admire those council members who voted for the measure, in my case there is a principle at stake. I feel that the citizens of Waterville expect more from me than to be a rubber stamp," he responded when asked by The Blade why he voted against the draft plan.

Mr. Metzger was referring to Toledo City Council's vote to approve the Lucas County Solid Waste Management District's draft amended plan which meant that no matter how Waterville voted, the measure would still go into effect.

The Lucas County Solid Waste Management District has been successful in reducing landfill waste, but that has resulted in less revenue.

To offset that continual decrease in landfill waste, officials are proposing the increase.

Jim Shaw, Lucas County sanitary engineer, told city officials last month that the county commissioners and Toledo City Council had approved the amended plan, and that Toledo's approval allows the draft plan to meet criteria for ratification because of that city's population.

Waterville Councilman Ann Cherry said she's not happy about not having a voice in the process but said she would vote for the amended plan so as to not close the door on future grants.

Mr. Shaw told city officials last month that the solid waste management district has had to cut some services and one thing it is trying to reinstitute is community grants.

Also voting no was Councilman Jim Valtin.

Voting yes were Councilmen Cherry and John Gouttiere.

Councilmen Tim Guzman and Jeff Marty were absent.

-- Janet Romaker

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