The Wood County Commissioners are enlisting the help of local officials to oppose increases in state fees for municipal solid waste and construction/demolition debris disposed at landfills.
In a letter to State Representative Randy Gardner and State Senator Mark Wagner that was forwarded to local elected officials in the county, the commissioners argue against the proposed increases, calling them “…another tax on our citizens.”
A budget proposal by Gov. Ted Strickland’s office includes increases of $1.25 per ton to the current $3.50 state fees for municipal solid waste. Of the new fee, the letter says, $1 would fund the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and 25 cents would help fund the Department of Natural Resources.
The fee covering construction/demolition debris would be increased to $4.40 from $2.70, with 45 cents going to the EPA and $2.25 to the ODNR.
“…2008 was a difficult year for the Wood County Landfill due to increased tonnage and elevated fuel prices,” the letter says. “To address the cost of fuel which had doubled in the span of two years, we enacted a fuel surcharge. We believe that the decrease in tonnage is due in part to the overall economy as a result of the enactment of initial state fees ($3.50 for MSW and $1.70 for C&DD) in 2005. Specifically, we believe that after these fees were imposed on landfills by the state, waste haulers began to divert MSW and C&DD tonnage to less expensive, out-of-state landfills.
“Available disposal space at our landfill is a very valuable thing and we have taken many steps to ensure the availability of space for at least the next decade. However, we must maintain enough tonnage each year to support the basic operations of the landfill. We must comply with many state and federal laws and it takes money to do so. When the state imposes fees such as these at the local level it greatly limits our local options for managing the landfill.”
Absentee ballots for the May special election in Ottawa County are available at the board of elections, 8444 W. State Route 163, Oak Harbor.
Three school districts, Port Clinton, Genoa, and Put In Bay, have issues on the May ballot.
Voters may vote an absentee ballot at the board of elections office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. from now to May 4, including Saturday May 2, from 8:30 a.m. to noon.
Voters may also receive ballots by mail. Applications can be printed from the county Website, www.co.ottawa.oh.us, or residents may phone or write the board of elections for a ballot.
Written application for absentee ballots must include the voter’s name, address, date of birth, signature, a driver’s license number or state of Ohio photo identification card number, or the last four digits of the voter’s Social Security number, or copy a current and valid photo identification, military identification, or a utility bill from the past 12 months, bank statement, government check, pay check, or other government document other than voter registration notification mailed by a board of elections that shows voter’s name and current address.
Statements identifying the election for which an absentee ballot is requested and that the person requesting the ballot is a qualified elector are also needed.
The Woodmore school board will hold a special meeting April 13 from 5-8 p.m. to conduct interviews for the treasurer’s position. The board will meet in executive session at the elementary school conference room.
The board’s finance committee will meet at 8 a.m. that day at the central office.
Small business summit
Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) will host a Small Business Summit April 15 from 10 a.m. to noon at Owens Community College.
The summit is open to small business owners in the Fifth Congressional District. For information call Congressman Latta’s Bowling Green office, (800) 541-6446.