Time for reflection, the NO VOTE was predictable. (1st part)
Possible Solution! (2nd part)
Op-Ed by Otis Lewis
The controversy surrounding the CES/ERS proposal to build a waste to energy facility in North Iowa has been interesting to watch, yet educational at the same time.
The most prevalent issue in all of this was, “Hurry UP”. Get this approved! That alone was the biggest red flag. I don’t have an issue at all, with a waste to energy facility; in fact I believe it will eventually happen. They are springing up all over the nation in one form or another. The NO vote was predictable. CES/ERS proposed this to an uninformed and trusting community, in a hasty and bullying manner.
It was obvious from the onset that Mayor Bookmeyer and City Council are amateurs who acted like bullies at times. Also disappointing was Cerro Gordo’s yes vote that blindly followed Mason City’s. I believe you have Supervisor Jay Urdahl to blame for that stupid yes vote by Cerro Gordo County. He has clearly aligned himself with Mayor Bookmeyer!
Now that this phase of the process has run it’s course let us recommend to the North Iowa Land Fill Board, a new process be started that will perform the following steps and bring resolution to the newly discovered “treasure” at the Land Fill.
FIRST QUESTION FOR THE NORTH IOWA LAND FILL
What are our Goals for the people of North Iowa who have to pay for this Land Fill required by LAW to handle our waste?
THE MOST IMPORTANT AND OVERRIDING GOAL OF THE NORTH IOWA LAND FILL MEMBERS SHOULD BE, COST CONTAINMENT.
Creating jobs is one thing, but doing so at the cost of the taxpayers with tipping fees at $13.00 per minimum load is a conflicting notion.
Let’s get our priorities in the right order!
1. Hire a professional consultant with expertise in waste conversion, to provide the North Iowa Land Fill all the current options and future possibilities available to turn waste into a profit for the taxpayers of North Iowa. Look for ways to reduce our tipping fees in the process. Currently $13.00 is the minimum amount charged to the public to take a load of garbage to the dump and that is far too expensive. If any one is going to profit from the waste then that profit should be used to reduce the publics cost to run and use the Land Fill!
2. Location of this facility should be a high priority that reduces the long-term health risks for the citizens of North Iowa, should there be any.
3. After study and consultation, create a RFP (Request for Proposals) and put out a proposal for bids on a waste to profit facility. Notice I said waste to profit, if creating energy, is the best use of our waste to create profit from our newly found treasure (waste) then all the better.
4. Keep the taxpayers of North Iowa fully informed of everything you are doing. Public Hearings to explain the end results would be a good thing.
5. Please don’t bully the taxpayers during this process!
I want to wish the North Iowa Land Fill Members, all the best, in dealing with the fallout from Mason City’s elite and the Globe Gazette because of your no vote. Your fellow taxpayers will all thank you at the end of this process for your professional leadership dealing with the waste to profit process!