With City funds, solid waste authority’s 2008 budget is passed and recycling programs will continue

City Manager Gary O’Connell arrived at the

Rivanna Solid Waste Authority (RSWA) board meeting today with $400,000

and

a letter from Mayor David Brown

that detailed “a fair and equitable way for the City to address its obligations.”  The contribution to RSWA erased a deficit in the FY 2008 budget which had placed recycling programs on the chopping block.

As has been reported in recent articles in the Daily Progress

(here

and

here

), the City has been withholding payments since 2001 related to the operation of the Ivy Materials Utilization Center (aka the old Ivy Landfill). Today’s payment of $400,000 was a good faith installment on what will be the release of the almost $2 million the City has been holding in escrow, pending resolution of all the details in the Mayor’s letter.



RSWA Chairman

Michael Gaffney

read Mayor Brown’s letter and shared his relief that progress was being made by both localities to reach a final agreement.  The City of Charlottesville wants what it believes are inequities in the current cost sharing structure to be resolved as part of the RSWA’s upcoming strategic planning process.

Free Union resident

John Martin

has been lobbying the Albemarle County Board of Supervisors and the RSWA Board to resolve the impasse with the City, by legal means if necessary.  At today’s meeting under public comment, he thanked the City for resolving the budget crisis and for being open about the issues that remain to be addressed.  “I think it is a huge step forward,” said Martin. On the remaining negotiations, he challenged the elected officials and the RSWA Board to share more information about what has been the subject of numerous closed door meetings. “I would greatly appreciate it if you could try to open the discussion to the public to the maximum extent that you can.”

Brian Wheeler

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