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Ventura County

Landfill Operator Seeks OK to Expand

County supervisors will take up Simi Valley dump's request to add waste capacity and increase acreage. One resident files complaint.

November 25, 2002|Amanda Covarrubias | Times Staff Writer

The operator of the Simi Valley Landfill wants to keep the county's only garbage dump open for another 30 years instead of closing it in 20 months when its permit expires, according to a proposal to be reviewed Tuesday by the county Board of Supervisors.

Although several nearby residents can see the dump from their homes, only one has formally complained about the growing mountain of garbage just north of the Ronald Reagan Freeway.

The county Planning Commission endorsed the landfill expansion plan in October.

Resident Brenda Megerle, who lives about five miles from the Madera Road site, asked in a letter to the Planning Commission that appropriate measures be taken to shield the garbage from her backyard view.

"I am concerned that it has the potential to double what I can see from my house, so I'm asking that they add some mitigation measures to prevent that from happening," said Megerle, who lives in the East Hills neighborhood of Thousand Oaks.

Landfill operator Waste Management of California wants to increase the dump's capacity to 29.6 million tons, up from the 16.6 million allowed under the present permit, said landfill manager Scott Tignac.

The landfill has not yet reached the 16.6-million ton mark but will do so in about seven years, Tignac said. By increasing capacity to nearly 30 million tons, the landfill could operate until 2034, he said.

To accommodate the increased garbage, Waste Management wants to expand the landfill's boundaries by 26 acres to 297 acres, onto property it would acquire next to the dump, Tignac said.

The landfill is allowed to receive up to 3,000 tons of solid waste per day, and the figure would not change under a new permit, Tignac said.

"Approval will provide for long-term municipal waste disposal capacity for eastern Ventura County well into the 21st century," county Planning Director Christopher Stephens said in his recommendation to the board.

Stephens' staff also addressed Megerle's concern about the height of the solid waste mound, saying landscaping requirements would improve the view from her backyard.

Recycled green waste and grass are used as coverage, Tignac said.

Legal notices about the Planning Commission's hearing were sent to all property owners within 2,000 feet of the landfill and to the cities of Simi Valley, Moorpark and Thousand Oaks. Megerle's was the only letter received by the county, officials said.

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