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Bell : Incinerator Suit Expands

February 04, 1988

The Bell City Council has voted to join a group of Vernon-area businessmen who have filed a lawsuit against that city to oppose construction of a hazardous waste incinerator there.

The suit, which was filed in December by the Central City South Assn., challenges the issuance of initial permits for the plant in March, 1987, and also charges Vernon with giving inadequate notice of a public hearing on the matter, said William D. Ross, an attorney for the association. The suit charges that a complete environmental impact report should be done to assess potential risks to area residents and businesses.

"We are concerned with the political ramifications and why the city is being so slip-shod in putting this project together," said Diana P. Scott, another attorney for the association.

California Thermal Treatment Services, the firm that wants to build the $29-million incinerator, already has secured most of the necessary permits.

Bell Councilman George Cole, an outspoken critic of the proposal, said an environmental impact report should be done before more state and federal permits are issued.

The incinerator is designed to burn more than 20,000 tons of hazardous sludge a year. It would become the second exclusively commercial hazardous waste incinerator in the state and the first in a populated, urban area.

"If a court can require the City of Irwindale to do an environmental impact report to build a stadium in a gravel pit then the first trash incinerator in the state (in an urban area) should have a full environmental study," Cole said.

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