The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Opinion

February 1, 2014

Viewpoint: Same threat to our county, different 'owner'

(Continued)

A search of state records revealed that these parent companies own landfills, waste transfer stations and waste collection businesses. Their only interest in farming is for the generation of revenue from tenant farmers while awaiting permits to operate landfills on newly acquired land. In fact, in 2010, Bex Farms attempted to have 115 acres of “farmland” adjacent to its Greensburg, Ind., landfill rezoned from agricultural to industrial in order to expand its landfill. It was unsuccessful because Decatur County’s Plan Commission denied the application for rezoning.

A 2011 title search of the landfill property purchased from J.M. Corporation, revealed the J.M. held clear title to the 254 acres. Yet, Thomas Gunn, trustee of the Ward-Stilson Trust, which sold the property to J.M. Corp./Reed family in 1979, was quoted as saying, “Ultimately, we’re pleased that circumstances came together and that we were able to do the transaction.’’

“We’re pleased" and "we were able to do the transaction?’’ Those possessives demand explanation. Who really owned the land?

The well-timed announcement that so many of us hoped would one day come was nothing but a tactic to relax our vigil and cease citizen opposition. Will it succeed? Our county government has failed to take up the issue for 35 years. It’s time for every one of us to call our commissioners and tell them their voiced opposition to this threat is no substitute for the action to protect the citizens of Madison County they pledged when we elected them.

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