Ohio Supreme Court says no to Rumpke landfill expansion

Courts turn down Rumpke landfill expansion

COLERAIN TWP, Ohio - Around two million tons of trash are brought into the Rumpke facility in Colerain Township every year.

However, that could eventually change after Wednesday's ruling made by the Ohio Supreme Court.  The Supreme Court stated that Rumpke is not a public utility and will have to abide by regular zoning laws in order to make its 206-acre expansion.

Nearby resident Vanessa Wilson is thrilled about the news after her experience last night.

"You could smell it all the way down the street like at Walgreens," she said.  "That's a couple miles down."  

"We are going to continue this effort until we reach a plan that benefits all parties involved and really secures the service," Rumpke Director of Communications Amanda Pratt said.

Rumpke services customers within a 60-mile radius.  Pratt said they only have 15 years of space left.

"Oh this is great news," Development Director of Ohio Citizen Action Melissa English said. "By striking down Rumpke's public utility claim, the Ohio Supreme Court upheld the will of Colerain Township."

English said it is time to start looking to other ways to dispose of the trash.

"The answer with what to do with our garbage is not to expand our landfill, but to recover our waste stream to 50 to 75 percent as other communities do," English said.

But, Pratt disagrees.

"Reality is, right now the technology is not available that enables us to recycle or reuse every type of waste that's generated," Pratt said.

Pratt said if Rumpke doesn't expand, residents will have to pay more out of pocket to have their trash taken elsewhere.

The nearest landfills are 50 to 90 miles away.

Rumpke plans to continue its fight for new land within the court system.

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