Winnebago County Board members will take a vote Thursday on whether or not to give local approval for a landfill expansion. Last night, board members heard from Derke Price, a hearing officer recommending approval of the expansion. He did not speak with reporters after the special meeting. But he told board members the Winnebago Landfill, near Baxter Road in Rockford, is expected to reach capacity in less than a decade. It was built in 1972. The expansion would provide enough room until 2047.
Winnebago County Board member John F. Sweeney says he supports the expansion, but the decision will be more difficult for other members.
Constituents have criticized the environmental impact of the expansion as well as a fear of odor from the landfill. John Lichty is president and CEO of Rock River Environmental Services. He says if approved, it could take 6-8 months to put together an application for the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency to get a permit to develop landfill. It could then take up to three years for the IEPA to decide whether or not to issue that permit. Construction could begin by 2018.
The meeting did not include public comments. But the public has had a chance to weigh in.