Carroll County Times: Incinerator decision should be made in January

The following article was published in the Carroll County Times today.

For those of you who are less familiar with the incinerator debate in Frederick County, the current proposal (which I do not support) is to construct a 1,500 tons per day facility, in Frederick County, that would serve both Frederick County and Carroll County (our neighbor to the east). The costs and utilization would be split on 60/40 basis (with Frederick County being the 60% partner).

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http://www.carrollcountytimes.com/articles/2008/12/19/news/local_news/newsstory9.txt

Carroll County Times
Friday, December 19, 2008

By Carrie Ann Knauer, Times Staff Writer

The Carroll County Board of Commissioners can expect to have a service contract with a vendor to operate a proposed bi-county waste-to-energy incinerator in late January, County Public Works Director Mike Evans said Thursday.

The Northeast Maryland Waste Disposal Authority received best and final offers on Dec. 4 from two companies competing to build and operate a 1,500-ton per day capacity waste-to-energy incinerator that would be shared by Carroll and Frederick counties.

Evans told the commissioners Thursday that the plans that were submitted are still being changed daily, and that the authority is waiting until the numbers are finalized to bring the plans forward to the counties.

Evans said the service contract should be finalized relatively soon, and then will be sent to the Frederick County Board of Commissioners. The Frederick board will then have the option to approve the contract, and could author-ize the vendor to go forward with engineering and permitting, subject to Carroll County’s board approving the contract.

The engineering and permitting process is expected to take 15 months, Evans said, and then each county will have to make one last decision before the sale of bonds to fund the project.

Commissioner Dean Minnich expressed concerns about how the cost of the project, which was expected to be a total of $350 million last year, is likely to change due to the country’s economic situation.

Evans said that the authority does not predict a change in the profits the incinerator would be able to make through the production of electricity from burning the waste, and that the costs for disposing of waste should re-main fairly steady over the 30-year term while the counties are paying off the construction of the incinerator.

The authority is also working on a memorandum of understanding that will set the conditions for the long term relationship between Carroll, Frederick and the authority for the operation of the incinerator, Evans said. The memorandum establishes a 40/60 relationship between the two counties, with Carroll being the smaller side, based on the amount of waste each side is expected to bring to the incinerator. This agreement should also be finalized in January, he said.

Reach staff writer Carrie Ann Knauer at 410-857-7874 or carrie.knauer@carrollcountytimes.com.

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