Coalition Opposing Promontory Point Landfill

Coalition Opposing Promontory Point Landfill

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BRIGHAM CITY, Utah (AP) -- Opponents of a landfill at the Great Salt Lake's Promontory Point hired a lawyer to stop the proposed 1,000-acre dump, which would be one of the country's largest.

The Promontory Point Coalition was organized by Rhonda Boren, chief executive officer of Mineral Resources International, which extracts food-grade minerals from Great Salt Lake.

"If I could get a perfect world, I'd keep the landfill out," she said.

The coalition hired Craig Galli, who represented Utahns for Better Transportation in the Legacy Highway dispute, but may withhold opposition if it can get certain concessions.

The group wants landfilled trash to be enclosed in plastic bales and lining inside rail cars that deliver the trash. It opposes any barge hauling of trash.

The Box Elder County Planning Commission voted Thursday to postpone granting any conditional-use permit to the business partners of Promontory Landfill. The commission plans to consult the coalition and state environmental officials before deciding.

"We are not ready to move on this at all," commissioner Richard Kimber said.

Mark Easton, business development and project manager for Pacific West of Salt Lake City, the company managing the project, asked the planning commission to grant the permit conditioned on the approval of Utah's Department of Environmental Quality. He said the state agency would make sure the landfill meets all standards. The commission declined that offer.

"There are some concerns that fall outside the parameters of DEQ," Kimber said.

Great Salt Lake is the largest lake west of the Mississippi River. The Golden Spike Board of Trustees says the landfill could hurt tourism, wildlife-watching, fishing and hunting.

"We're becoming more aware of the heritage we have here, and let's not jeopardize that," said Beth Gurrister, chair of the Box Elder County Tourism Council.

"We're working very hard to make Box Elder County a destination," she said.

Box Elder County officials plan to meet with the coalition and DEQ before making a decision on the permit.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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