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WMA Still Wrestling With Tire Disposal Issue

Oct. 12, 2006 – The fate of old tires dominated much of the discussion Thursday at the V.I. Waste Management Authority board meeting held at the Battery on St. John.
"We're going to ship them off island," WMA Executive Director May Adams Cornwall said, noting that a viable way to put them to use in the territory hasn't developed.
Cornwall said the authority has shipped two trailer loads off island from St. John, with a third one in the works. Waste Management started work on this project in March after the Department of Planning and Natural Resources threatened to fine St. John businesses who had old tires standing around because they had no way to dispose of them.
She said that the authority has located a site on St. Croix to collect used tires and that they're waiting for approval from V.I. Fire Services.
According to Cornwall, WMA decided to tackle St. Croix next because it had about 30 locations with illegal tire dumps.
"And they had dengue outbreaks," she said.
After Cornwall said there were no known places on St. Thomas with piles of tires, board chairman Winston Adams said there werent any piles because residents dumped them down the hill into the bush.
Board member Keith Richards said he told a St. Thomas restaurant owner that if he didn't get rid of the old tires standing nearby, he wouldn't eat his Saturday night fish dinner there anymore. After the tires disappeared, Richards said he asked the owner what he did with them.
"He told me 'Don't worry about it,'" Richards said.
Richards said that this was the fourth time the board had discussed the used tire issue. "I want a definite plan to deal with tires because it's going to blow up in our face," he said.
Richards said that a joint Planning/Waste Management task force was needed to deal with the tire problem, but Cornwall said that getting such an undertaking under way would require "cabinet level" assistance.
"We need a high-level meeting," she said.
Cornwall said the job of making sure illegal dumping doesn't occur would be easier if DPNR enforcement officers had tire sellers show paperwork indicating where their used tires went.
She also said that DPNR is quick to issue citations to the authority, as it recently did when a St. Croix wastewater treatment plant suffered problems, rather than helping the agency to comply.
"All I ever get is enforcement," she said.
Cornwall said that the authority is now charging business owners for disposing of their used tires.
She said she expects the much-awaited user fees to be charged by Waste Management for using its services and facilities will begin in this fiscal year.
"At the latest April 1," she said.
According to Cornwall, even if the full schedule of fees can't be implemented all at once, partial implementation would help the authority generate revenue, adding that if the fees had to change, the customer could get a credit.
She said the fee schedule is completed, but now must be approved by the Public Services Commission. She said the commission and the authority met Wednesday on the matter.
The WMA board also discussed a Sept. 27 alleged arson at the Anguilla landfill on St. Croix. The contractor, St. Thomas-based A-9 Trucking Enterprises Inc., lost about $400,000 worth of equipment.
Adams claimed the Police Department was dragging its feet in investigating the matter and asked that the FBI be brought in.
In her report to the board, Cornwall said that a $198,000 grant from the U.S. Energy Department and the Southern States Energy Board will allow the authority to determine if it's feasible to turn the gas that develops at the Anguilla landfill into energy. She said this energy could be used to power treatment plant blowers.
The authority's chief planning officer, Sonya Nelthropp, in discussing a proposed operational plan yet to be unveiled to the agency staff, said the agency spent $8.2 million in capital projects during fiscal year 2005. That figure will rise to $43 million in 2006.
Cornwall said that 60 percent of the agency's budget goes to contractors hired for various purposes.
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Oct. 12, 2006 - The fate of old tires dominated much of the discussion Thursday at the V.I. Waste Management Authority board meeting held at the Battery on St. John.
"We're going to ship them off island," WMA Executive Director May Adams Cornwall said, noting that a viable way to put them to use in the territory hasn't developed.
Cornwall said the authority has shipped two trailer loads off island from St. John, with a third one in the works. Waste Management started work on this project in March after the Department of Planning and Natural Resources threatened to fine St. John businesses who had old tires standing around because they had no way to dispose of them.
She said that the authority has located a site on St. Croix to collect used tires and that they're waiting for approval from V.I. Fire Services.
According to Cornwall, WMA decided to tackle St. Croix next because it had about 30 locations with illegal tire dumps.
"And they had dengue outbreaks," she said.
After Cornwall said there were no known places on St. Thomas with piles of tires, board chairman Winston Adams said there werent any piles because residents dumped them down the hill into the bush.
Board member Keith Richards said he told a St. Thomas restaurant owner that if he didn't get rid of the old tires standing nearby, he wouldn't eat his Saturday night fish dinner there anymore. After the tires disappeared, Richards said he asked the owner what he did with them.
"He told me 'Don't worry about it,'" Richards said.
Richards said that this was the fourth time the board had discussed the used tire issue. "I want a definite plan to deal with tires because it's going to blow up in our face," he said.
Richards said that a joint Planning/Waste Management task force was needed to deal with the tire problem, but Cornwall said that getting such an undertaking under way would require "cabinet level" assistance.
"We need a high-level meeting," she said.
Cornwall said the job of making sure illegal dumping doesn't occur would be easier if DPNR enforcement officers had tire sellers show paperwork indicating where their used tires went.
She also said that DPNR is quick to issue citations to the authority, as it recently did when a St. Croix wastewater treatment plant suffered problems, rather than helping the agency to comply.
"All I ever get is enforcement," she said.
Cornwall said that the authority is now charging business owners for disposing of their used tires.
She said she expects the much-awaited user fees to be charged by Waste Management for using its services and facilities will begin in this fiscal year.
"At the latest April 1," she said.
According to Cornwall, even if the full schedule of fees can't be implemented all at once, partial implementation would help the authority generate revenue, adding that if the fees had to change, the customer could get a credit.
She said the fee schedule is completed, but now must be approved by the Public Services Commission. She said the commission and the authority met Wednesday on the matter.
The WMA board also discussed a Sept. 27 alleged arson at the Anguilla landfill on St. Croix. The contractor, St. Thomas-based A-9 Trucking Enterprises Inc., lost about $400,000 worth of equipment.
Adams claimed the Police Department was dragging its feet in investigating the matter and asked that the FBI be brought in.
In her report to the board, Cornwall said that a $198,000 grant from the U.S. Energy Department and the Southern States Energy Board will allow the authority to determine if it's feasible to turn the gas that develops at the Anguilla landfill into energy. She said this energy could be used to power treatment plant blowers.
The authority's chief planning officer, Sonya Nelthropp, in discussing a proposed operational plan yet to be unveiled to the agency staff, said the agency spent $8.2 million in capital projects during fiscal year 2005. That figure will rise to $43 million in 2006.
Cornwall said that 60 percent of the agency's budget goes to contractors hired for various purposes.
Back Talk


Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.