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Death knell for Newhall MRF?

City head plans to urge Burrtec to abandon property.

Posted: March 27, 2008 1:16 a.m.
Updated: May 28, 2008 5:03 a.m.
 
To calm remaining fears that a large recycling plant could still be built along Sierra Highway in Newhall, City Manager Ken Pulskamp said this week he will request that Burrtec Waste Industries abandon the Newhall site as an option.

Though Burrtec has halted plans to move forward with building the 170,000-square-foot recycling center, the company has not yet withdrawn its application with the city, Pulskamp said at Tuesday's council meeting.

"It is obvious that if Burrtec can quietly put the (environmental impact report) on hold, they can also quietly restart it," said Alan Ferdman, chairman of the Canyon Country Advisory Committee. "We deserve a guarantee that this will not happen."

Pulskamp agreed to meet with Burrtec's management staff and ask the company to submit a written statement ensuring its intent to take the proposed site off the table.

The commercial waste hauler had been planning to build a materials recycling facility - or MRF - west of Highway 14 between Placerita Canyon Road and Golden Valley Road. But an uproar from area residents prompted Burrtec to suspend work on the environmental study last week.

The MRF would likely process about 1,000 tons of waste per day and could process up to 3,000 tons per day as the city grows.

Residents have persisted in their opposition and have repeatedly told the council of their concerns about decreased property values, increased truck traffic and environmental effects. About 20 residents spoke in opposition at Tuesday's meeting, and some vowed to speak at every council meeting until Burrtec withdraws its plans.

Because the matter was not on the meeting agenda, the council was limited in its ability to take action.
"I love you dearly, but we don't need to see you at every meeting,"

Mayor Bob Kellar told the residents Tuesday. "You think we're not listening? Ladies and gentlemen, we hear you loud and clear."

Councilman TimBen Boydston, who lives in a neighborhood near the site, suggested the council decide at a future meeting whether to impose a moratorium that would prohibit a MRF at the Newhall site. However, City Attorney Carl Newton said it would be more feasible to work with Burrtec on the matter.

He said to the residents protesting the MRF: "I will be off the council in another month and I will be joining you."

Due to the Santa Clarita municipal election on April 8, the next regular City Council meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. April 22 in the City Council Chambers of City Hall at 23920 Valencia Blvd.

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