Talking trash: Scott officials discuss options for combating illegal dumping

Nick Shepherd • Updated Jun 8, 2017 at 11:30 AM

GATE CITY — Scott County has a trash problem. And the Board of Supervisors might have to make an unpopular decision in order to fix it.

Possible solutions to the problem of illegal dumping, by people from out-of-state and out-of county, include closing all 16 trash disposal sites every evening, closing all sites every Sunday and closing only the sites that get the most illegal trash every night.

Almost all of the sites are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Those options, which did not include the unpopular sticker program discussed last month, were hashed out during a lengthy discussion toward the end of the BOS’ monthly meeting Wednesday.

“Compared to May of last year, we have 192 tons more, this year, of trash to haul out,” said Bill Dingus, public works director.

Scott County pays a $27 tipping fee for every ton of trash, so the more garbage that has to be disposed of, the more money it costs the county. And considering the county had to pull money from its unappropriated surplus fund to balance the budget late last month, the county does not have money to spare.

Vice Chairman Danny Mann started the discussion by saying that on a recent visit to the waste site in Dungannon, he saw three containers meant for household trash had been filled to the brim with brush.

He was followed by Supervisor Darrel Jeter saying a citizen had informed him of trucks coming down Yuma Road with multiple loads of trash. The citizen told him that many of the trucks came from across the border in Tennessee.

Supervisor Chad Hood was the first to offer a solution for the issue.

“One suggestion is why don’t we start closing them every evening?” he asked the board. “So there’s not any nighttime trash when nobody’s there.”

Hood said he thinks a lot of the illegal dumping probably happens at night.

Mann pitched closing the sites on Saturday nights and not opening them again until Monday morning. He told the board when the county first started opening the sites on Sunday, it was supposed to be temporary. Mann later proposed closing the sites where the county knows a problem exists, especially the ones close to Tennessee.

Several other options were discussed including putting the county name on license plates and starting a county-run trash pickup program. Ultimately, Chairman David Redwine narrowed the choices to the three most feasible.

Toward the end of the discussion, he called on supervisors to speak with members of the community and for Dingus to get some information together on all three proposals.

“Let’s make a commitment to make a decision next month,” Redwine told the board. “And let’s concentrate on these three proposals.”

In other business, the BOS:

— Approved a resolution for the Personal Property Tax Relief Act, which concerns locally registered vehicles.

— Approved the Chief Local Elected Officials Consortium Agreement and approved Supervisor Jack Compton as an alternate for the county.

— Approved Ron Bostic from Bostic, Tucker & Company P.C. to provide auditing services for the county.

— Approved Hickock, Fern & Company for accounting services for the next five years.

— Approved a State Homeland Security grant to support the CERT program.

— Appointed Freda Starnes to the Mountain Empire Regional Business Incubator, with Dingus as an alternate, and Eugene McClellan to the Southwest Regional Recreation Authority.

— Approved $10,984.96 in reimbursements to Duffield Volunteer Fire & Rescue and the Scott County Lifesaving Crew for their coverage of Nickelsville.


Kingsport Times News Videos