With litigation terminated, the parties involved in the Mallard Lake landfill dispute are free to speak.

Members of the Madison County Board of Commissioners may do just that when they attend a meeting of the Killbuck Concerned Citizens Association on Aug. 7 at Highland High School. The meeting will be open to the public.

Commissioner Pat Dillon, R-Middle District, said she plans to attend the meeting and has confirmed the date with fellow Commissioner Paul Wilson, D-South District.

“We’re strictly going as spectators,” Dillon said. “They did drop the case so we are able to go and listen. Paul and I aim to go and listen.”

Commissioner John Richwine, R-North District, was on vacation and could not be reached to confirm his attendance at the meeting. Regardless, the meeting represents a major development in the 30-year landfill issue.

On June 7, the KCCA, Steve Wilkinson and Anderson Community School Corp. agreed to drop litigation against the Madison County Board of Zoning Appeals. The petitioners filed suit in October 2000 for special findings of fact related to permits and a special-use exemption granted to JM Corp.

County officials had refrained from commenting on the issue while the suit made its way through the court.

KCCA President Sheryl Myers said the group is soliciting its members for questions to ask the commissioners and a moderator will help facilitate an orderly conversation.

“Emotions will be high, so we’re not planning to have a microphone in the audience,” Myers said. “We’re wanting to keep a lid on the passion. We want the meeting to be constructive and for them to see us as the reasonable people we are.”

Myers hopes the commissioners will be willing to deliver an opening statement before the question-and-answer portion of the meeting. The KCCA has a mailing list of 600 addresses from which to solicit questions and those responses will be consolidated into a concise list.

“This meeting is so long overdue that it hurts. It’s 27 years overdue,” Myers said. “The county commissioners are elected to help protect the health and welfare of the residents of the county. It poses an outstanding threat.”

Since 1979, JM Corp. has been trying to create a landfill at County Road 300 East and County Road 300 North in Richland Township. In May, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management cut off talks with JM Corp., sending the matter back to Marion (County) Superior Court.

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