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John Andersen: Seymour residents need a seat at the table regarding dump's future
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John Andersen: Seymour residents need a seat at the table regarding dump's future

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I have been reading and hearing about folks in the Town of Seymour being upset about a landfill. I am amused by the use of the word landfill. That word gives dignity to what was always called the Dump. Where I live in Lake Hallie I am within striking distance of three dumps. I do not think of them often but I know that they are there.

There is the old, old Hallie Dump around the corner of 30th Ave and 110th Street. Then there is the old Dump just south of the current Hallie Baseball and Soccer Fields. Then there is the City of Chippewa Falls Dump on 50th Ave or Nelson Road. The Old Hallie Dump and the City of Chippewa Falls Dump are being constantly monitored for groundwater contamination.

Landfills are a serious business. Cities like to place landfills outside the City Limits then annex them to the City. Usually those dumps are located in a Town such as Seymour, Union or Wheaton.

In the Town of Seymour’s case, Seven Mile Creek Landfill is considered a part of the City of Eau Claire. Of course the landfill is named after a creek that runs adjacent to the landfill property. What started out as a City of Eau Claire dump in 1978 turned into an Eau Claire County dump which was sold to Advanced Disposal which may sell it to Waste Management.

The current controversy stems from this hearing notice posted by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources:

“ The feasibility report proposes a 12.5-acre horizontal expansion and a 22.0-acre vertical expansion of the existing landfill that would result in an increase in disposal capacity of approximately 4,130,000 cubic yards and add an estimated 7 years of site life. The approved maximum height of the landfill would increase by approximately 64 feet from the currently approved maximum height, to a peak elevation of 1165.5 feet above mean sea level.“ Mean sea level of the Town of Seymour is 912 ft so the dump at its final height will be 253 feet or so.

The site accepts garbage, building debris, non-hazardous industrial waste, non-hazardous liquid waste and asbestos. The daily landfill volume average is 1,660 tons per day but there is no regulated daily maximum.

Also This facility is permitted to accept waste from all counties in Wisconsin and surrounding states and accepts waste from Advanced Disposal subsidiaries and third party companies. (from Advanced Disposal’s website)

So in short you have a very impressive garbage dump which has been expanding for 43 years. Add 7 more years to the expected life span you will have a dump that will celebrate it golden anniversary in 2028. I doubt that there will be a party. Indeed Seymour residents are working for just compensation, secure property values and a seat at the table to discuss the future of the dump.

What is fair for the citizens of Seymour? A few ideas. Limit the area which waste is accepted. Seymour should not be the dumping ground for outside states, Minnesota, Iowa or other Advanced Disposal Subsidiaries. Obviously garbage is a profitable business. Perhaps buyouts should be offered to families that wish to leave, based on fair market value.

Those wishing to stay should be given property tax credits or a guarantee of a sustainable fair market value for their house.

If wells are contaminated Advanced Disposal should be required to secure for the residents a potable water supply. Such as paying to have the City of Eau Claire extend municipal water to the affected properties without annexation or give Seymour the ability to set up a Water/Sanitary District.

We can all agree that if you purchase a property you should be aware of the surrounding properties. I am sure that back in 1978 no one believed or expected the dump would grow to the size it has. My garbage in Lake Hallie probably goes to 7 Mile Landfill in Seymour. I would be willing to pay more for service if that would help Seymour residents. The time has come to live up to our responsibilities. Fair is Fair to the residents of Seymour.

Unrelated to any dump to all the Mom’s out there Happy Mother’s Day tomorrow. Enjoy your special day.

Time Capsule: Take a trip back in Chippewa County

Each Saturday, the Chippewa Area History Center showcases a piece of local history in the Herald. The Area History Center at 123 Allen St. Chippewa Falls, has multiple rooms of displays about Chippewa County history and genealogy. Here are some of the recent stories.

 
 
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This undated photo shows the John Geiger barn under construction near Stanley, Wisconsin. The barn was built by local carpenter, Frank Koepl, …

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Miss Carrie Meinen was born July 12, 1880, to John and Mary (Benisch) Meinen, early settlers of Tilden. She originally pursued a vocation to t…

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Walter J. LaCour was born to Mr. and Mrs. Frank “Frenchy” LaCour on October 27, 1919, in Brush Prairie, near Bloomer, WI. He graduated from th…

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The Sheeley House, a well-known landmark and beautiful example of Italianate Revival architecture, is located at 236 West River Street in Chip…

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In the 1920s, the Chippewa Candy Co. built a modern factory building at 210 E. Columbia St. It was designed especially “to meet every requirem…

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Time Capsule: The Bridge O’ The Pines (aka the Rumbly Bridge) Opens in Irvine Park on October 21, 1913

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This 1940s view of Bridge Street has many features that look still look very familiar today. In the upper left, you can see the Hotel Northern…

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The old and the new County Trunk Highway S merge at the back gate of Irvine Park. The former County road which crossed at “Burnt Bridge” will …

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This vintage postcard shows the Northern States Power Company Chippewa Falls Dam and Hydro Plant located at the foot of Bridge Street in Chipp…

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This vintage postcard shows an early image of the Stanley, Wisconsin, Soo Line Railroad Depot. The building still stands but is not occupied.

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This early image of Glen Loch Dam, circa 1910, shows a wider spillway that directs the water over the rock structure on the left and a wooden …

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Today was moving day at the Chippewa Falls Senior High School and the transfer of books, desks and equipment to the new educational institutio…

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Teach Adelaide Nussle stands in a classroom with her students at the Chippewa Falls First Ward School in 1910.

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The spacious Chippewa Falls High, built in 1906 on the hill above Cedar and Bay Streets, witnessed many students pass through its doors. A voc…

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