FARMERSVILLE - Integrated Waste Systems, a landfill developer seeking a permit to build a 3,000 ton per day facility in Farmersville, placed the Town Board on notice Monday night that a $15 million lawsuit is being filed as a result of a recent amendment to a local solid waste law. Town Attorney Donald Swariz said Tuesday that he found the company's claims of a breach of contract "absolutely ridiculous."
"The town has a right to protect itself by amending the local law. The public welfare and health is of concern to the board and will continue to be," said Swanz, adding that the board tightened up provsions for the landfill's construction and operation after several matters came to the board's attention.
Integrated Waste Systems owned by Southern Tier Waste Services, is also seeking punitive damages, Swanz said.
Swanz, who did not attend the Town Board's meeting Monday night, said he plans to set up a meeting with board members to discuss the notice of claim. He said it requires no immediate action but signals pending litigation and requires a response from the town within four months.
This is not the first time the company has threatened litigation since first announcing plans to develop the landfill in 1989. In 1990 and early 1991, the separate notices of claim as board members stmggled to update a 1953 landfill ban before the project got under way.
Those claims were withdrawn when the town negotiated and then signed a contract agreeing to grant a local permit and accept royalty fees of between $2.75 and $3.50 per ton if the facility is approved by the state Department of EnvironmentaI Conservation.
William Heitzenrater, president of Southern Tier Waste Services, reportedly told the Town
Board on Monday night that investors are losing $4,000 a day on the project.
Heitzenmter also warned that he will be seeking reimbursement of all
expenses lost in attempting to ready the project for a DEC environmental review.