Polk purchases 40 acres of land for landfill monitoring wells

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The Polk County Board of Commissioners added an additional 40 acres to its solid waste transfer station land in Mill Spring with a $242,500 purchase.

Commissioners met Monday, April 20 and after returning from closed session unanimously approved the purchase in order to replace landfill monitoring wells.

Commissioners approved a budget amendment as well to transfer $247,000 from its fund balance to the solid waste enterprise fund. Polk County Finance Director Sandra Hughes said the amendment made the most sense since the land would be an asset of the solid waste transfer station.

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Polk County Manager Marche Pittman said in 2013, Altamont Environmental, the county’s engineering service for its solid waste transfer station, recommended installing new ground water monitoring wells. The county closed its landfill several years ago and opened the transfer station adjacent to the landfill. Landfills require monitoring for many years and wells are required there to monitor for chemicals, minerals and poisons, according to Pittman.

Pittman the current four wells are hard to sample and need to be replaced. The current wells are on the property line, so commissioners directed Pittman in early 2015 to approach the adjacent property owner.

Pittman said negotiations culminated and the property owner, Ronnie Garrett, made an offer to sell the approximate 40 acres for $242,500.

Pittman said the county is considering drilling two new environmental wells on the newly acquired property for landfill monitoring. He said he did not have any estimates on the cost of the wells yet, but plans to discuss estimated costs with commissioners during budget discussions. The new wells will not be drilled until sometime after the new budget year, which begins July 1. Commissioners have scheduled budget work sessions for May 18 and 19, both beginning at 3 p.m.

Polk County’s landfill and transfer station is located on approximately 100 acres off Hwy. 9 South in Mill Spring. The 40-acre purchase will mean the county’s solid waste facility has approximately 140 acres.