Chiquita Canyon Landfill

Passed 4/6/2015

Whereas, the Chiquita Canyon Landfill is operated for profit by Waste Connections, Inc., located in Los Angeles County near the unincorporated town of Val Verde, an underrepresented community of mostly low income Spanish speaking residents with no local elected government; this landfill accepts the majority of its waste from distant communities including the San Fernando Valley, Inglewood, Redondo Beach, Beverly Hills, El Segundo, Ventura and Orange Counties; it had by contract promised the Val Verde community that the landfill would be closed when it reached its permitted capacity or 2019, whichever occurred sooner; instead, the operator now proposes to expand the landfill by more than 50% and to triple the current daily intake rate, making it one of the largest and busiest landfills in the country; the expansion will extend the life of the landfill by 20 to 40 years; and

Whereas, the expansion will severely impact the health and well being of individuals living, working, and schooling near the site; impacts include significant negative effects due to increased truck traffic and inherent risks of landfill gases, landslides, and pollution to groundwater and the watershed; the landfill will be visible with no barrier between businesses and homes east of the landfill; the landfill has had numerous incidents and complaints; inspections have generated numerous citations and violations of the conditional use permit for offenses including odor affecting residents, excess and explosive gas levels, accepting non-permitted sludge, inadequate trash cover, inadequate control of dust, birds, and litter, late filings of required reports, and exceeding total number of tons of trash per day; in the 1994 Northridge earthquake the Chiquita Canyon Landfill was reported to have significant damage with multiple tears in the geosynthetic liner; because of these sorts of impacts, landfills are usually sited away from residential areas, rivers, and water resources; and

Whereas, the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County have spent a decade and $430 million building a railway system to haul trash to the empty Mesquite Regional Landfill in Imperial County, but the system is sitting idle because repeated landfill expansions have increased landfill capacity; and the County Planning Department held a public hearing on this expansion to which no members of the commission appeared and with a hearing officer who has no decision making authority;


Therefore Be It Resolved, that the Democratic Party of the San Fernando Valley calls on the Los Angeles County Planning Commission to conduct full public hearings on the Draft Environmental Impact Report with all commissioners present, and calls on both the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors to reject the expansion, and

Therefore Be It Further Resolved, that the Democratic Party of the San Fernando Valley calls on these bodies to explore expediting the opening of the Mesquite Regional Landfill.