AMITE — The Tangipahoa Parish Council learned Monday that it should be able to review at its Sept. 28 meeting a remediation plan to correct a state complaint about the misuse and excessive storage of shredded tire material at the parish landfill near Independence.
Harold Leggett, director of regulatory affairs for PPM Consultants of Baton Rouge, an environmental science and engineering firm, said the team managing the response to the state Department of Environmental Quality’s complaint is continuing to gather information, but the plan will be ready by the council’s next meeting.
In June, DEQ filed a formal complaint against Tangipahoa Parish over the shredded tire material and how it was being used in the construction of a firing range at the landfill. The range has been under construction for a number of years and remains unfinished. DEQ also informed the parish that millions of pounds of the tire material was being stored at the landfill, an amount not allowed under a permit granted to the landfill to accept the shredded tires.
DEQ stated that if the parish did not come under compliance it could be fined thousands of dollars a day for every day that the landfill was noncompliant.
Councilman Carlo Bruno asked Leggett if the council would be given an opportunity to review the parish’s response to DEQ.
“That’s how we got in this mess in the first place — by not being told about the shredded tire material,” Bruno said.
Leggett agreed and said that the response would be given to members of the council.
Council President David Vial said that the matter would be discussed in executive session at the Sept. 28 meeting.
Leggett said after the meeting that the formal proposal to DEQ will include plans to handle the shredded tires.
Leggett said that the possibility exists that the shredded material could be put to some use.
“There are legitimate uses for the shredded tires,” he said.
Leggett said that the response to DEQ would also contain a plan for better record-keeping and accountability at the landfill.
“We are working to show DEQ that in the future the landfill will be managed even better that what it is now,” he said.
Leggett said he believes the parish may be able to avoid having to pay penalties on alleged misuse of the shredded tires.