G'land trash switch gets Bethlehem thinking

With Guilderland ending its contract with the Rapp Road landfill and sending its trash to Colonie, Bethlehem has been looking at its own contract, which is set to expire next year.

Councilman Sam Messina raised the issue at the end of the Wednesday, July 8, Town Board meeting.

I read some things in the newspapers about the Albany Common Council raising some issues and concerns on whether or not they will take the necessary action to approve the bonding of the landfill expansion, Messina said. " I read of course about Guilderland and Colonie making an arrangement and I think about us and what I've been reading lately raises a couple of flags."

He said the biggest flag was the "big number" of the proposed expansion that could come in at around $40 million.

Messina said the town spends around $60,000 for its Rapp Road permit and sends around 100 tons a month to the landfill. He added that when the town caps its own Rupert Road construction landfill in November, the tonnage, and thus the cost for the town, could increase.

The Rupert Road transfer station will remain open, according to Supervisor Jack Cunningham.

He said the town's contract with the Solid Waste Management Plan, formerly known as ANSWERS, expires in 2010.

"I think it behooves us maybe to have our engineering department and our highway department to look at this at a cost perspective and maybe an environmental perspective," he said.

Messina said there could be "some misinformation out there" and the Town Board should try to plan ahead. Cunningham gave updates to the rest of the board and to the public on the matter.

"I've already talked to Colonie and I talked to Guilderland about their arrangement," he said. "We are continuing to work with the ANSWERS community regarding the existing landfill and the steps that need to take place with that."

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