Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Subcommittee To Review Amendment To Casella Agreement

Ken O’Brien

Tonight at 6:30 the General Government subcommittee will meet in the Rice Conference Room in the Town Hall. On the agenda is the following item:

Discuss First Amendment to the Extension Agreement for the Operation of the Barefoot Road Sanitary Landfill, and Refuse and Recyclables Collection and entertain a motion to submit to the Council for ratification.

What does this amendment contain? 

The key words are:

 A “Highlights” document accompanying the text of the amendment reads as follows:

Highlights of Proposed Amendment to the Landfill Agreement with Southbridge Recycling and Disposal Park, Inc.
  1. What the Town Receives
1.      Revenue from landfilling of “triangle” – est. at approx. $2mil. through estimated filled to capacity date of 2022.
2.      Annual Debt Service Payments for the construction of a sewer collector to connect the airport to the existing sewer collector on Commercial Drive, plus a sewer pump station and a leachate pre-treatment plant – $3.6mil.
3.      Revenue from effluent collection fees for Casella sewage after pre-treatment at leachate plant – est. at $_______ per year for an indefinate [sic] number of years.
4.      Revenue from excess capacity of leachate pre-treatment plant to neighboring towns or commercial users plus sewer fees – current est. is unknown but the value of this may be in the multi-hundreds of thousands.ue of signing fee at $55,000.
5.      Value of opening development of multiple acres of industrial land as well as industrially zoned land at airport – value is unknown but would doubtlessly be in the hundreds of thoursands. [sic]
6.      Value of pre-treatment plant operations – est. at $____________ annually for life of Agreement (less agreed fees from other municipal or commercial users).

  1. What Southbridge Recycling and Disposal Park Inc. Receives
1.      Revenue from landfilling the triangle land.
2.      Dependable ability to dispose of landfill leachate for a reasonable predictable price.
3.      Ability to “claw-back” sewer bond fees from royalty payments otherwise owed if permits are not secured for landfilling of triangle, but NOT including payments for the leachate pre-treatment plant costs. 

It is expected that the amendment will be taken up by the Council at its Committee of the Whole Meeting scheduled for June 22nd.


  1. When Chuck Colson worked for Richard Nixon he had a poster on his wall that read "When you have them by the balls their hearts and minds will follow."

  2. What is the point of this if not to restrict the Council and BOH’s ability to act?

    h) To the extent permissible by law and without divesting or limiting any office, board or committee of its proper jurisdiction or independent authority, the Town shall support SRD with respect to the permitting of additional areas (the “Additional Areas”) within the Solid Waste Management Area. The Parties acknowledge that the areas identified as the “airport triangle,” a rectangular area on SRD-owned property, and the Tower Road property each will require a site assignment, and that all of the Additional Areas will need approval from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

    And does this constitute a loophole for Casella to get out of paying for extension of the Pre-Treatment Facility if they don’t Get approval?

    j) In the event that SRD does not receive all necessary Permits and approvals (including any site assignments) required to construct all of the additional landfill capacity in the Additional Areas, then SRD shall deduct the total amount of all Annual Airport Sewer Line Fees paid by SRD through the date such Permits and approvals are denied from any payments thereafter owed and due to the Town pursuant to this Extension Agreement until the total amount of such Annual Airport Sewer Line Fees are recouped in full by SRD. SRD’s obligation to pay the Annual Pre-Treatment Facility Fee shall not be altered or adjusted in the event all necessary Permits and approvals required to construct all of the additional landfill capacity in the Additional Areas are delayed or not obtained.

  3. SRD has had no positive impact on the town. We should satisfy our existing obligations to them and then show them the door. It's time to start thinking about the nfuture of Southbridge.


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