A New Game Changer Zoning Case

I published this post last January but my law partners – who won the case – asked me to take it down. Why? Because the other parties asked the N.C. Supreme Court to review the decision and one of the bases for higher review is a case’s significance. And since I had described this decision as one […]

The Politics of Trash

Last Friday, August 23rd, N.C. Governor Pat McCrory signed three bills into law whose passage demonstrates how solid waste has transformed from a regulated industry into a political football.  Some new measures, like changes in application fees, are mundane.  Other measures, however, such as the allowable leak factor in hauling trucks, are highly charged, with […]

In Search of a Civil Government

Two nights ago I attended a public hearing in Asheboro where Randolph County considered approving a new landfill next to its old landfill. Granted, landfill hearings generate their share of emotion, but civility is civility and this hearing was in short supply. [Fair disclosure: the county is my client] According to the Courier Tribune article, […]

Board of Adjustment 33 Hour Marathon

             After six nights and 33 hours of testimony and deliberation, the Harnett County Board of Adjustment reached a decision this week regarding a Conditional Use Permit for a regional landfill.  It was a marathon.  I know, because I was there.              Was it a record?  I don’t know.  My previous marathon was a 5 […]

Speaking of Solar Farms, Landfills and New Zoning Codes . . .

             2,000 years ago all roads, it was said, led to Rome.  Today, all roads – or at least all major societal trends – lead, eventually, to changes in local zoning codes.  Like when we adopted entirely new zoning codes to adjust to being an automobile dependent society.  Like when communities adopted regulations controlling placements of […]

Let’s Talk Trash

             Let’s talk trash.  It’s a large part of what I do each day, and I’ll start with you.  In 1960 “you” generated, on average, 2.68 lbs of trash (household waste) every single day.  But in 2007 you generated almost twice that amount at 4.63 lbs per day.  In fact, your average daily trash […]

Unscrambling Scrambled Eggs

            When it comes to appellate litigation there are holdings (which are fodder for legal treatises) and there are lessons (which become fodder for life in the real world). Last week the N.C. Court of Appeals issued an unpublished opinion in Jobe, et. al. v. Town of Haw River that has a clear holding and a […]

Winning the Trash Talk War

            Last week the Scotland County Board of Commissioners voted not to allow expansion of an existing but closed landfill.  Opponents won the war, however, when they won the battle of “trash talk,” a linguistic victory that occurred long before the Board of Commissioners’ vote.              A modern landfill is an engineering success story for […]

The Anatomical Solution to Solid Waste Problems

Landfills vs. Dumps — Is there a Difference?

            The Greensboro News & Record has been full of front page articles this week about an alleged cancer cluster near its White Street Landfill.  The landfill was closed to household waste a few years ago due to political pressure, but has continued to accept construction and demolition debris.             As claims of a cancer […]

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