Monday, September 13, 2010

Trash Talk

The last time we visited the project to rebuild and enlarge the Lookout Trash Transfer Station, it was to say little progress is evident in the talks between the city, the North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) and neighborhood groups opposed to the plans. In April, the city claimed that a deal was near. In June, a group called the Neighborhood Protection Alliance of Richardson last updated its website with a pessimistic outlook that any such deal was imminent. The NTMWD itself has not updated its website concerning the issue since September of 2009.

After the jump, what's new.

So, what's new? Well The Dallas Morning News published a story by Ian McCann today that claims that the parties are "close to an agreement." The sticking point has always been the size of the reconstructed transfer station. Currently permitted at 500 tons/day average, NTMWD originally proposed a new station permitted at 950 tons/day average, and later reduced the proposal to 750 tons/day average. That's where things stood last December. That's where things stand today, at least from what's been made public.

McCann states that "discussions this year have lowered that [750 tons/day] further" although he doesn't state a figure or cite a source for that optimism. The number must be higher than 625 tons/day, which is the figure he says residents are asking for, or else we'd have an agreement.

Whether today's hint of agreement is any surer than April's hint of agreement is anybody's guess. McCann says, "Neighborhood leaders and city officials expect to meet in coming weeks to review a draft agreement. If that is successful, a public forum would then take place." In other words, when a deal has been worked out in private, then the general public will be invited to comment and not before. And not a clause of the Texas Open Meetings Act will have been violated in the process. That's trash talk.

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