Bay Minette residents address concerns with county landfill proposal

Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 5:42 PM CDT
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BAY MINETTE, Ala. (WALA) - Several people in Bay Minette are speaking out against a proposal to open a new landfill in the area. A public hearing on the issue this morning got a little heated.

Red Hill Road extension in Bay Minette, 2 miles west of Highway 59 could soon become the site of a new landfill and a transfer station.

A sanitary landfill was previously located in the area from 1975-1990. Terri Graham, Baldwin County Commission’s Development Environmental Director, says this is NOT the first time county officials have proposed reopening the Red Hill landfill.

“I did bring it up before there was some some miscommunication on notifications between the commission and engineering,” Graham explained. “So we just started back over.”

Jake McMillan grew up in Bay Minette.

“The schools are a mile away on the same road, the high school and the middle school,” said McMillan. “So you’re talking about a traffic issue because all these county trucks barreling down the highway.”

During the hearing, many locals reiterated some of McMillan’s concerns.

“We know the need for it,” said Tim Murray, who owns property in Bay Minette. “And we understand the need for it. Just not in the back of the neighborhood, put it in an industrial area.”

During the presentation, Daniel Wells, a representative of the company helping with design, explained what type of waste will be accepted at each facility.

If opened, the Red Hill landfill would accept up to 200 tons per day of construction building waste from people who live Baldwin County. Collecting that much garbage, according to Daniel could require use of 50 trucks per day.

The transfer station adjacent to the landfill will accept up to 350 tons per day of residential waste like household garbage and recycling, potentially requiring use of 40 trucks per day. Officials are also considering opening the transfer station to accept waste from six other counties, something that definitely did not sit well with locals at the hearing.

“You know, all that traffic coming past both our schools is going to very dangerous,” said Emily Ryan, who lives in Bay Minette.

Some also requested county officials find another location for the facilities. But, Terri Graham says Red Hill is the only location being considered at this time.

There will be another public hearing on this proposal on September 19th at 8:30 a.m. at the Baldwin County Commission Chambers on the 2nd floor at 1100 Fairhope Avenue Fairhope, Alabama. Comments will be compiled and given to County Commissioners October 2nd and they will vote on the proposal the following day.