City of Jonesboro moves closer to closing Strawfloor Landfill

By Josh Harvison - bio | email

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The Jonesboro Mayor's Office Thursday was given a letter from the Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality, stating the city is in the final stages of closing the landfill on Strawfloor Road. In the letter, the city's Class 4 Landfill has been placed in Post-Closure Care Status for the next two years.

"We have our materials stored out there for streets, like when it gets bad weather. We've got materials out there. Everybody is in operation out there now until we build a new building on Dan Avenue. They're still going to be there," said Harold Perrin, Mayor of Jonesboro.

Perrin told Region 8 News the city has been trying to officially close the landfill for several years. In 2006, the city agreed to let the Legacy Landfill to take over all landfill procedures in Craighead County.

"They cover it with plastic and layers of dirt, and then they're required to put vegetation on top of that," said Angela Sparks, Executive Director of the Legacy Landfill.

The landfill on Strawfloor Road has several pipes, which bring methane gas produced from garbage underneath the hill to a flare. The flare then burns the excess methane as part of a safety measure.

"They reached capacity a few years ago and rather than construct a new Class 4 Landfill, the city of Jonesboro and the Craighead County Solid Waste Disposal Authority board worked together to come to an agreement to have one landfill serve all of Craighead County," said Sparks.

"We also will keep records for two years and they will come throughout the two years and do inspections probably on a monthly basis, which is fine. At the end of the two years, you'd get your final certification closure," said Perrin.

"They look to make sure that it's properly lined on top of the landfill so that waste won't pop through the cover and cause pollution in the air, land or water," said Sparks.

Perrin told Region 8 News Friday he's not sure what the city will do with equipment, land and buildings at Strawfloor. The facility still accepts downed tree limbs and other materials. The buildings also house the Sanitation and Road Departments.

"When we get the new buildings built on Dan Avenue, then we'll have that area out there. The question is, are we going to use those buildings for city operations like putting our materials on the inside when it gets to be the winter months? The trucks could come in and get the materials and it'd be dry and all that stuff. At this time, we don't know exactly what we're going to do with all of the facilities out there. We've got the scales. We've got the two buildings out there and the transfer station," said Perrin.

"We could even make a decision to sell that property and we've had some people ask us, are you going to sell those facilities? If you are, we'd like to have an interest in it," said Perrin. "Trucking operations and a lot of things like that could use that and those buildings are, in my opinion, still in good shape. That's something that we got to look at on the building committee and take to the council and decide."

"A Class 4 accepts what they call non-putrescible solid waste, which is your hard-fill, your construction material, your concrete and things that don't decay easily. Class 1 accepts municipal solid waste, which is your food, clothing, things like that that decay," said Sparks.

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