* Mecklenburg County Avoids Public Input on Spending $15.1 Million to Bail Out ReVenture

Where is our clear and transparent decision making in local government? Apparently when it comes to decisions about ReVenture Park and their plans to build a gasification incinerator, making decisions without public input and review has become the norm.

The Mecklenburg Solid Waste department presented three proposals impacting ReVenture to the Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners for a vote on April 5th regarding. They did so without using the appointed Boards and Councils charged with their oversight:

  • They took the proposal to the BOCC without presenting the proposal to the citizen panel of the Mecklenburg Waste Management Advisory Board for review.
  • They took the proposal to the BOCC without presenting the proposal to the citizen panel of the ReVenture Advisory Council for review.
  • They took the proposal to the BOCC without presenting the proposal to the citizen panel of the Foxhole Advisory Council to review.

What did Commissioners Roberts, Pendergraph, Bentley, Clarke, Cogdell, Cooksey, Dunlap, and Leake approve without waiting for citizen input? (Commissioner James voted no because the vote breaks the agreement made with the citizens of the Ballantyne area):

  1. They approved $15 million dollars to be financed to expand the Foxhole Landfill so ReVenture would have a place to put their excess waste from their regional garbage, commercial waste and industrial waste facility. There is no urgent need for this expansion. As the Commission stated, “We wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t for ReVenture”.
  2. They broke their agreement with the local residents and approved the Foxhole Landfill to accept municipal solid waste (smelly garbage), commercial waste and industrial waste from ReVenture (no fee structure was discussed).
  3. Since ReVenture is seeking a permit to accept waste from Mecklenburg County, Union County, Cabarrus County, Gaston County, Iredell County, and Lincoln County, the Foxhole Landfill has the potential to become a regional dumping site for ReVenture.
  4. They made this decision without giving the Waste Management Advisory Board citizen panel the opportunity to present their findings. Why?
    1. They didn’t want you to know that the ReVenture Team “does not have sufficient expertise to credibly represent the scope and long-term impact of the project.”
    2. They didn’t want you to know that “The process of vetting the ReVenture project has been compromised by local political and financial interests.”
    3. They didn’t want you to know that the WMAB had advised the Commissioners that “no contract be executed between the County and ReVenture without a favorable from this outside expert source.”
    4. They didn’t want you to know that “If ReVenture fails, it will damage Charlotte’s credibility around the New Energy Hub concept.”

Did an emergency come up and decisions have to be made about this? Of course not! The option to begin using the Foxhole landfill for municipal solid waste has been discussed in various meeting going back to November and December of 2010. You see, apparently when it comes to decisions about ReVenture Park and their plans to build a gasification incinerator, making decisions without public input and review has become the norm.

If you think that this should change, send an email to your County Commissioner and let them know that you aren’t happy.

Jennifer Roberts Chair, At-Large 704-336-2574 jennifer.roberts@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
Jim Pendergraph Vice-Chair, At-Large 704-336-2472 jim.pendergraph@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
Harold Cogdell At Large 704-336-3866 harold.cogdell@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
Karen Bentley District 1 704-432-3997 karen.bentley@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
Vilma Leake District 2 704-336-2088 vilma.leake@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
George Dunlap District 3 704-336-4419 george.dunlap@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
Dumont Clarke District 4 704-336-3473 dumontclarke@mvalaw.com
Neil Cooksey District 5 704-336-5400 neil.cooksey@MecklenburgCountyNC.gov
Bill James District 6 704-336-2573 Wjames@carolina.rr.com
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This entry was posted in Charlotte, Forsite, Incinerator, Incinerator Free Mecklenburg, Mecklenburg, ReVenture, Sierra Club. Bookmark the permalink.

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