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County Board votes on how to use landfill host fees

The Mower County Board of Commissioners voted to divide demo landfill host fees between a dedicated account for landfill cleanup and solid waste cash reserves during its meeting on Tuesday.

According to Mower County Administrator Trish Harren, the county has collected about $158,000 in fees since instituting host fees last year.

“The purpose of the fees is to offset cost to taxpayers in the event that the landfill closes and it is discovered that there is a pollution issue of some type that has to be mediated,” she said. “We have changed our contracts with landfill operators to include financial assurance that they will take on responsibility, so the county no longer has the need to save money just in case. We are now able to use some of that money to cover other solid waste expenses, such as invest in our recycling program that does not break even.”

The board voted to keep 50 percent in the landfill cleanup account and 50 percent into the solid waste cash reserves to use for other solid waste expenditures.