Citizens looking for a way to keep the county’s two refuse transfer stations open have been granted a reprieve.
The West Virginia Public Service Commission (PSC) issued an order for the dumps to remain open until a hearing can be held on their closure March 18.
Boone County administrator Jim Gore stated, “There is a hearing March 18 with one of the PSC judges. At that time, the decision will be made on a permanent closure or if they have to keep it open, then they will have to set rates.”
Until the hearing, a tentative fee of 25 cents per bag has been set for use of the dumps.
For over three decades, Boone County has been unique in the state of West Virginia in offering free trash dumps to citizens.
On Sept. 30, 2015, the Coal Valley News reported the Boone County Commission (BCC) had made the decision to start the process of closing the Rock Creek and Fosterville public solid waste transfer stations.
Since their official inceptions, the transfer stations have been funded by revenue collected from coal severance taxes, and, since the downturn in the coal industry, the county has been troubled by the prospects of paying for facilities.
At the time, BCC president Eddie Hendricks stated, “We do not want to do this, but financially we have no other viable options.”
At the Sept. 29, 2015 meeting of the BCC, Gore added, ““It costs approximately $1.3 million a year to operate the two transfer stations and that is not counting the employees salaries. It is paid for out of our coal severance tax revenue, which…is now below even the cost to operate just the two transfer stations.”