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Residents Protest Transfer Station at Village Meeting

Morton Grove village administrator presented information to quell fears and concerns regarding facility proposed by Lakeshore Waste Services, but speakers did not appear to be swayed.

More than 100 residents attended the Morton Grove board of trustees meeting Monday to learn more about a proposed transfer station at 6132 W. Oakton St. adjacent to the corporate headquarters of Lakeshore Waste Services

A presentation on the status of the potential project was given by Village Administrator Ryan Horne. The potential petitioner, Lakeshore Waste Services, has not submitted a formal application to move forward on the project.

Once that were to happen, it would take at least six months to move the project forward. 

Close to 20 people voiced their oppositon to the proposal during the public comments which lasted close to two hours, Horne said. 

"Everyone is feeling cheated that there wasn't enough infromation ahead of time about this issue," said Tom Maddex, a member of The Citizens to Stop the Morton Grove Transfer Station. 

Maddex said one bright spot in the meeting was when Trustee Daniel DiMaria suggested town hall meetings be held on the issue to keep residents more informed.  

"One of my problems was that our group was the one trying to tell people about this project; when I asked how many people at the meeting found out about it through the village website, no one raised their hands," Maddex said.

"When I asked how many were made aware [of it] by our group's communications, 80 percent of the hands were up in the air," he said. 

The Citizens to Stop the Morton Grove Transfer Station was formed in mid-July, .

"We started with a group of eight [homeowners] on Cleveland Ave., and decided we had to do something about this, because it really is in our backyard," Maddex said. 

People began asking how they could get involved and help us to make sure this transfer station does not come into the village, Maddex said. 

A former principal in Chicago who now lives in Morton Grove spoke in opposition of the project, according to Maddex, and said at the meeting if something like this happened near his former school, parents would be up in arms to protect their children.

"When the parents of Niles West Township High School learn about this project that would be located right near the high school, it's not going to be pretty," Maddex said.    

Another concern expressed was in regards to the size of land necessary for the transfer station, that would potentially handle 500 tons of waste a day. 

"Some of the residents did personal research and found such a transfer facility would required at least 10 acres of land," Maddex said.

Lakeshore Waste Services is situated on five acres, according to Horne. 

"Because a project of this type is handled by a regulatory agency [the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)], residents might not understand that we cannot take a stance on this," Horne said. 

"If the area is too small, I would think the EPA would not move foward with [Lakeshore's] the application," Horne said. 

Horne said what was in the village's power was to negotiate a safeguard by requiring Lakeshore, if they were to file an application and move forward with the project, to reimburse the village for all legal costs which could amount to close to $400,000. 

"I know residents were discouraged to learn the village has to remain neutral on this," Horne said. "We have no power to say no to it, due to it being overseen by the EPA." 

Horne admits there are strong emotional concerns about the issue, and said he understands why people are emotionally charged up about it. 

Concerns remain about increases in truck traffic, health hazards, the smell of garbage, lowering of property values and losing the character of Morton Grove by having a transfer station in the village, Horne said. 

Meanwhile, at least one of the residents opposed to this project doesn't appear to be backing down. 

"This is a battle that the residents will not allow [Lakeshore] to to win," Maddex said.  

Joe August 23, 2012 at 02:34 AM
People like Cynthia S. and D. Goldberg must really get a good salary from the garbage company.. Or is it a kickback to a loved one?? Either way hopefully you don't trick anyone into believing the nonsense you continue to spew everyday. The REAL residents of MG will continue to battle this project!!
Dan Goldberg August 23, 2012 at 03:01 AM
Again with the personal and unfounded attacks...must mean you're running out any real arguments eh? Sorry Joe, you seem to be the one spewing the hate and misinformation along with Don and then there's Sherwin with a long history here of doing so. I hope you all find some peace in your life and stop looking so hard for a fight. Will you all also issue an online apology to everyone if we find out that the village board was following a proper path to do what's best for the village? If they don't, show they acted in our best interests, then I will apologize to you and the rest of the readers too. I think the REAL residents of Morton Grove know just what you, Don and Sherwin are all about. Stop the hate friends, it will kill you in the end. PEACE!
Lizzy T August 23, 2012 at 10:57 AM
I don't want a garbage station, but condeming these particular village board members for something that hasn't happened and other problems not of their making is not right either. It was the last group under Mayor Krier and his party who stopped the OTB, which is now making money for Niles, not these people. End home rule, what does that mean? Would the state run us then? If so, then we'd be in a real pickle seeing how well they're doing. We didn't need referendums, we just simply voted in new officials to have our voices heard. I wish people would get all their facts straight and remember the golden rule about how to treat and expect to be treated by others. Too many nasty comments here lately and so needlessly bitter. It is just a shame and so embarrasing to see how people act these days, always trying to use rude comments to make a point and belittle others who don't follow their attitudes. Shame on you all, if I were your mother I'd be washing your mouths out with soap!
sherwin dubren August 23, 2012 at 05:42 PM
Lizzy, there is no shame in pointing the finger at those responsible for this mess. At this point, I would trust the state and federal governments before our village officials. Your stupid remarks about washing out mouths indicates you have no clue as to what is going on in the village and you are probably a person of questionable intelligence.
Lizzy T August 23, 2012 at 05:58 PM
Sherwin, I'm keeping a big bar just especiallyfor you. You might want to try reading "How to Win Friends and Influence People" someday. Calling others stupid, clueless and of questionable intelligence just proves to me, and I would hope many others, what kind of person you truly are. Shame on you Mr. Dubren! I pity you but I will pray for you too!

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