Transfer station

Proposed site of the proposed solid waste transfer station and recycling center.

A public hearing on a proposed solid waste transfer station and recycling center has been scheduled for July 22 at Scott County High School starting at 6 p.m.

The application for the proposed facility, Ironworks Recycling and Transfer Center, lists the address as 1949 Lexington Road and was applied for by Republic Services of Kentucky, LLC. Coming from Georgetown on U.S. 25, the site is the former Interstate Transformer plant near Josie’s of Georgetown.

Scott County Judge-Executive Joe Pat Covington said the county requested the Energy and Environment Cabinet, Division of Waste Management, Solid Waste Branch, hold the hearing.

“We have some concerns about environmental and public safety issues at that site,” Covington said. “There is enough traffic on the road as it is and there are some concerns that the site sits on the aquifer that provides water to Royal Spring where a lot of drinking water comes from. We just believe that the issues should be addressed before the state issues a permit.”

John Bishop, who recently was granted a permit by the state for his own solid waste transfer station on 245 West Yusen Way, said the U.S. 25 site was originally his first choice.

“The community leaders said they would not support the location when I looked at it,” Bishop said. “They had concerns about traffic, being an eyesore and the environmental issues of what was made there before.”

The materials that were used to make the transformers was hazardous, and Bishop was told the building will require quite a bit of work to renovate, he said.

“I picked a different location and got approval,” Bishop said. “The area we got is ideal. It is a manufacturing area with multiple factories and a couple truck stops. It won’t be a nuisance to neighbors or an eyesore.”

The Scott County Fiscal Court is currently waiting to hold a second reading on a siting ordinance that would give the county more say in where a transfer station could locate and the criteria it must meet to operate. A first reading of the ordinance passed at a special meeting a couple weeks ago.

“Adopting a siting ordinance has been an action item on our solid waste plan for some time, so this predates this application,” Covington said. “The ordinance we are considering would protect the county and residents from the circumstances and variables surrounding the request.

“There are positive aspects about a transfer station. We just want a voice on where trash is brought from into Scott County, and consider traffic volume and safety of the residents. We just want to protect our county and make sure the big picture with all variables and issues are considered before a site is selected and approved by the state.”

The application that will be heard July 22 says the proposed transfer station would receive waste from approximately eight counties in Kentucky.

Bishop’s company, Innovative Trash Services, recently sold the residential portion of its portfolio to Rumpke.

“Part of the purpose of a transfer station is you can truck garbage to a landfill if you don’t have one in the county. It does add cost to the service because it is handled twice and you can pull out recyclables and send it elsewhere,” Bishop said. “One of the reasons we had to stop offering recycling is that Lexington was sending most of it to the landfill anyway and it does cost more. People tend to think it should be free.”

The language in the permit that allows trash from other counties is to cover themselves in case one of their customers puts something in the trash from another county, he said.

“We look at where the manufacturing sites are and where it may come from,” Bishop said.  “The permit covers us if one of our customers receives a package from another county or state, so we are covered to dispose of it.

“But I can tell you most people are not going to send the garbage that far to us because they may drive past a landfill closer to them and it would be cheaper.

“I live in Scott County, and I don’t want my station to be an eyesore.”

Steve McClain can be reached at smcclain@news-graphic.com.

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