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October 29
1932 - Highway 99 completed through Weldon Canyon, bypassing Ridge Route [story]
Hwy 99


The public will have more time to tell the county what it thinks an environmental review of a proposed landfill expansion in Val Verde should cover.

The Los Angeles County Department of Regional Planning sent out letters Dec. 27 stating it is extending the comment period on a “notice of preparation” (NOP) to Feb. 13. Comments were originally due by Jan. 12.

The NOP is the first planning document relating to a proposed expansion of the Chiquita Canyon Landfill.

Located north of State Route 126 between the U.S. Postal Service processing facility on the east and Chiquito Canyon Road on the west, Chiquita is a Class III solid waste landfill that operates on 257 active acres.

The expansion would stretch the landfill’s capacity to roughly 400 acres, all within the boundaries of the operator-owned land.

Previously located in Folsom, operator Waste Connections Inc. moved its corporate headquarters to The Woodlands, Texas, over the weekend.

Under the current 1997 operating agreement with the county, the landfill would max out at 257 acres in 2019 and it would have to close. The expansion would allow the landfill to operate well beyond that date.

In addition to accepting non-hazardous solid waste, Chiquita recycles "green waste" on site. Source: ChiquitaCanyon.com

According to the latest county letter, in addition to expanding the disposal footprint and time horizon, Waste Connections Inc., is also requesting “an increase to allowable daily tonnage of acceptable waste, an increase to the disposal capacity, and to allow for the disposal of all non-hazardous wastes acceptable at a Class III solid waste facility.”

Chiquita is currently limited to 6,000 tons of waste per day and 30,000 tons per week – and the limits are met. According to the landfill website, it “typically accepts between 5,000 to 6,000 tons per day.” It’s open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m., and it “opens as early as 3 a.m. for commercial customers most days of the week.”

The county letter continues: “The proposed project would also include the continued diversion of such materials as green waste, asphalt/concrete and metal through ongoing landfill waste diversion programs on which numerous jurisdictions depend to comply with state-mandated waste diversion goals.”

From ChiquitaCanyon.com: Rather than using noise-making devices, Matt, Chiquita's falconeer, uses six falcons to scare away unwanted birds that might otherwise eat garbage and spread disease. Exposed trash is covered daily.

Santa Clarita sends most of its trash to Chiquita (some also goes to the Palmdale and Sunshine landfills) – but most of Chiquita’s trash isn’t from the Santa Clarita Valley. The vast majority originates in other parts of Los Angeles County, as well as Ventura and Orange counties.

The purpose of the NOP is to give the public a chance to weigh in on the scope of the environmental impact report that’s required for the project. What should the county examine? Public agencies and individuals now have until Feb. 13 to say.

Once the deadline passes, the public’s next chance to comment will come after the environmental report is drafted.

For an earlier story on the expansion and the $250,000-a-year deal with the Val Verde Civic Association, click here: http://scvnews.com/?p=22764

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