Town, county hit garbage issues hard at meeting

Trails residents vent fears about ‘stinky, ugly’ recycling facility

The Town of Mammoth Lakes and Mono County have been at opposing sides of the garbage issue for a long time and last week, it was easy to see why.

A Town/County Liaison meeting on July 11 turned personal when Town Council member John Eastman took umbrage with a comment made by the county’s new county administrative officer, Jim Leddy.

In response to CAO Leddy’s comments that the county was moving forward on a “transparent and open” process in regards to dealing with the costly and so far intractable how-to-deal-with-the-garbage issue, Eastman pounced.

“Are you implying we (the Town of Mammoth Lakes) have not been transparent and open?” he said.

Although Leddy assured Eastman that was not the case, there were several more emotional moments, including sometimes very impassioned pleas from the Trails and other local residents to not build a “stinky, ugly, garbage dump” near their homes. The parcel of land that the facility might be built on is near the Trails.

The solid waste issue has been an ongoing problem for both governments due to its cost and that the state is now requiring more garbage to be recycled.

Both Leddy and Town Manager Marianna Marysheva-Martinez said they would continue to work together to find a solution, but the emotional tone of the residents who attended the meeting was not easily dissipated.

The Mammoth Lakes Town Council is expected to consider a land purchase item during closed session  on July 24 related to the issue of where—and whether—to build a new recycling facility that the town has said in the past is the town’s best way to meet the state’s recycling mandate.