Dorchester County Council OK's Landfill Vertical Expansion - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Dorchester County Council OK's Landfill Vertical Expansion

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BEULAH, Md.- Neighbors have a nickname for the landfill in Dorchester County.  They call it "Mount Trashmore," and more trash is on the way.  The county will allow additional garbage to be dumped atop the landfill.

In the last days of the Martin O'Malley administration, the then-governor filed an executive order barring the creation of new landfills in the state.  The landfill in Beulah is already is peeking over the treeline, so they were faced with the decision of expanding up, or trucking trash away.  The decision to go up was made by the Dorchester County Council, and neighbors who live near the giant pile of trash are not happy.

"We're in the spot where we either have to go up, or the Maryland Department of the Environment would tell us to permit a transfer station where the trash would be loaded on trucks and take out of the county.  That would double if not triple the cost to the residents," said County Council Vice President Tom Bradshaw.

Without an increase, the landfill would be full by the end of next year.  This increase would see that the max height is about 68 feet above where the top is now, but the county says they don't want to get to that height.

"We may only have to go up six or eight feet on the existing landfill," said Bradshaw.

At that point, the county hopes to have another solution.  Neighbors aren't pleased about any increase, however.

"Everybody has invested their life savings in their homes knowing that they were going to have a 75-foot high dump and now it is going to be 68-feet taller than it is now?  I think that is against the public trust," said Gloria Dolan, a member of the Concerned Citizens of North Dorchester.

She believes the inevitable solution is trucking, so why not just do it now?

"I understand that we have our back against the wall and I understand that it would be difficult to truck our trash out in a year or a year and a half, but if that's what we have to do then that's what we have to do," said Dolan.

The ideal solution for both the citizens and county leaders is to be able to open a new landfill.  Councilman Bradshaw says they are working on a possible solution with the Maryland Department of the Environment that could make that possible, although nothing is set in stone.  Neighbors though are admittedly skeptical that anything will come of it.

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