Dump Decision Imminent In Caldwell County

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The Texas Third Court of Appeals is set to issue a ruling as early as Wednesday afternoon that could decide the fate of the planned giant 130 Environmental Park dump near Lockhart.

Opponents of the dump, without help from the Caldwell County Commissioners, have argued the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality broke the law when it issued a permit to a Georgia-based company to build the 17-story-tall dumpsite.

The fight centers on the Caldwell County siting ordinance, which sets the locations for possible garbage dumps.  The ordinance was passed after Green Group had filed the first half of the permits necessary for a dump, which focus on the suitability of the land. The TCEQ ignored the distinction and a state district judge ruled against the dump opponents.

“We have been highly critical of the county judge and the current commissioners for refusing to fight for the clear intent of the siting ordinance,” said Wayne Dolcefino, President of Dolcefino Consulting. “Having the county stand up for its own ordinance would have been very useful in the lawsuit against the TCEQ. Abandoning the fight against a dump near a high-hazard dam and critical aquifers says a lot about the current commissioners court and their concern about all the people who will be forced to raise their children near this dump skyscraper.”

Dolcefino Consulting began investigating Green Group when the Georgia-based company tried to build a dump near Hempstead on Highway 6. TCEQ killed the dump after water tests proved the planned dump would cut through the water table. Original boring and soil tests had been destroyed, as they have been in the planned 130 EP dump.

Green Group now only owns a minority share of the dump. A new company called IWSG has taken over, and the Caldwell County Commissioners have yet to discuss the company publicly. Safety improvements recommended by a citizen group a few years ago have also been ignored.

We learned from emails in the City of Lockhart that the planned grand opening of the dump is scheduled for May 14, 2021.

Many of the dump’s neighbors tell Dolcefino Consulting they haven’t been told what’s happening. County Judge Hoppy Haden has refused to hold a public hearing in recent months to update the community.

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