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CATTARAUGUS TO AIR PLANS FOR DISPOSAL PROPOSED COUNTY LAWS EXPECTED TO DRAW FLAK

Plans to handle solid-waste disposal in Cattaraugus County after Sept. 1 will be discussed at 3 p.m. Wednesday as the Cattaraugus County Legislature holds public hearings on proposed solid-waste laws.

One law will set disposal fees on garbage -- $1 per 30-gallon bag -- and higher fees for haulers who bring solid waste to the transfer stations in large trucks.

Those haulers would be subject to $100 annual permit fees and would have to pay $25 per vehicle if they want to dump at county facilities.

The law would require people to separate recyclable items from their solid waste.

Currently the county has a voluntary program for recycling newspapers, glass, tires, batteries and plastics.

The laws are not without criticism, which is expected to be voiced by mayors and other village representatives who have already publicly opposed the laws.

Cattaraugus Mayor John A. Philip has written to municipalities and sent copies of the proposed laws with a notice of the hearings.

Philip, president of the Cattaraugus County Municipal Officials Association, has been a critic of the laws while they were being drafted.

He said the one law is still deficient in that it has no plan behind it.

The county has hired a consultant to draft a solid waste management plan. Hearings on the plan are to be held in July.

In a letter to legislators from Philip on behalf of the association, he advised the county a landfill is needed and the county shouldn't depend on landfills in other counties.

The county now burns most of its solid waste at an incinerator in Cuba and hauls some solid waste to CID Landfill in Chaffee.

Legislators have been hesitant to go ahead and construct a county operated landfill.

The county closed two landfills in recent years at a cost of $3 million.

Local villages are opposing the law because the tipping fees will put a strain on their budgets and no money has been included to cover the new costs.

During committee meetings legislators discussed a conditioning period after the law are passed to give residents and haulers time to get used to recycling and comply with the new laws.

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