Local landfill stench leaves residents frustrated
BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - A stinky situation in Bay County is continuing to frustrate many residents. They complained the Waste Pro landfill in the Sand Hills area has an unbearable stench at Tuesday’s Bay County Commission meeting.
“That smell is a health hazard,” Sand Hills resident Zenia Moran said. “No matter how they layer it, no matter how they want to present it. It is a health hazard. You can’t even enjoy your own property.”
Moran also said the landfill across the street from Deane Bozeman School has smelled for years.
“I was told about seven years,” she said. “It has been getting worse as each year passes.”
Commissioners said the landfill should close, but there’s only so much they can do.
They made it clear that they do not have the final say in renewing the contract with Waste Pro. It’s ultimately up to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection.
That’s why commissioners voted to submit a letter to the DEP urging the agency to not renew the contract.
“DEP has authority over it,” Commissioner Doug Moore said. “DEP determines whether they’re going to extend the operation of the landfill or not.”
Moore said Waste Pro hasn’t followed through on all of its efforts to mitigate the ongoing smell.
“Unfortunately, in my experience, they’re always about to do something or are doing something when it comes time for the renewal,” he said. “But then after the renewal happens, it goes back to the way that it was.”
NewsChannel 7 asked Waste Pro management for an on-camera interview but they declined to comment.
Residents just want the opportunity to enjoy their property once again.
“It can be a problem where you want to have a barbecue in in your backyard” Moran said. “You want to have family over and friends, and you can’t because it smells.”
Moran created a group on the Nextdoor app called “Stop the Stink in the Sand Hills Community.” She is encouraging people to join it.
DEP officials sent NewsChannel 7 a large document on the situation. You can read it by clicking on the link.
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