The following is a (very slightly edited) press release sent by the Stop the Mega-Dump group.
The Stop the Mega-Dump citizens’ group is asking the DeKalb County Board not to turn their backs on the citizens of Cortland again. Citizens of Cortland Township have petitioned the Cortland Township Board of Trustees for a special meeting to vote on a resolution that would prevent any landfill expansion in their township. The special meeting will be held on the evening of Tuesday May 18th, the day before the DeKalb County regularly scheduled board meeting. However, the county has added an earlier meeting of May 10th at 7:30 to vote on the landfill expansion application by Waste Management Inc.
“We urge the DeKalb County Board to postpone the vote on the landfill expansion until their regularly scheduled meeting on May 19th,” Dan Kenney Chair of the Stop the Mega-Dump group said in a press release of May 4th. “The citizens of Cortland Township who will be the most impacted by this expansion have been left out of the process. We believe the county board deserves to let them have a chance to express what they want first, before the county votes to add 2,000 tons of garbage a day to the landfill in the heart of their township.”
Many Cortland citizens who attended a Town Hall meeting on the landfill expansion, sponsored by the Stop the Mega-Dump group on April 24th in Cortland, were angry that they didn’t have a vote in what was going to happen in their front yard.
One resident of DeKalb County said, “It’s like if we are taking our garbage and dumping it on our neighbor’s front lawn.”
The citizens of Cortland were also angry that the town board entered into an agreement with Waste Management that involved Waste Management paying the town $1 million dollars in exchange for the town not to lodge an objection to the expansion or support any effort on the part of citizens to lodge such a complaint.
“We feel we have been sold out,” one angry Cortland citizen said at the town hall meeting.
The citizens of Cortland Township are relying on the authority provided the township under the Illinois Township Code (60 ILCS 1/30-120) Sec. 30-120, which reads, “The electors may prevent the deposit of night soil, garbage, or other offensive substances within the limits of the township. This section does apply to refuse disposal facilities regulated by the Illinois Department of Public Health and the county in which the facilities are located.” (Source: P.A. 82-783; 88-62)
So the resolution that the Cortland Township citizens will be voting on will state, “Be it therefore resolved by a vote of the Electors of Cortland Township that no expansion of the landfill located in Cortland Township along Somonauk Road just South of I-88 will be allowed.”
“By moving the landfill expansion application vote up to May 10th over a week earlier than it was scheduled is another insult to the people who will have to literally live with this decision forever. It will be their property values that are most affected by this. It will be their children at the Cortland elementary school who will be breathing the air everyday coming from the mega-dump,” Dan Kenney said. “I can’t imagine what it will feel like to people of Cortland Township if the county board goes ahead and votes on this before the citizens of Cortland vote. It will be like the county board members turning their backs on the citizens of Cortland Township one more time. They are saying by voting before the people of Cortland have their say, that the county board doesn’t care what the people of Cortland want, they don’t care what the people of Cortland Township want, and we are going to have this expansion any way we can get it.”