Neighbors fret after county approves landfill expansion near elementary school

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- The CBS 6 Problem Solvers are working to get answers for some neighbors in Chesterfield County who said they feel blindsided by the approval of an expansion to a landfill.

The county hired an outside expert to help evaluate the landfill's expansion application, which did not find substantial danger to the community. However, many residents remain concerned.

As Victoria Sagstetter oversees HVAC work at her home, she takes a moment out of her busy life as a mom to three young kids to breathe.

“Yeah, it’s beautiful. That’s why we moved out here,” Sagstetter said.

She showcases the home she and her husband purchased off Hull Street in far west Chesterfield, and she loves this community, but a recent decision by the Chesterfield Board of Supervisors has her upset.

“Landfills are obviously a necessary ill, but putting one 5000 feet away from an elementary school is just unacceptable,” Sagstetter said.

The Chesterfield Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 this week to allow Skinquarter Land LLC to expand its landfill operations on Hull Street to include construction demolition debris.

“This could be a slippery slope, they could request new permits to deposit more waste different types of waste in this landfill,” Sagstetter said.

County staff recommended the board approve the landfill’s expansion plan, finding it poses no present or potential danger to the health safety or welfare of any person as well as no substantial present or potential danger to the environment.

However, some residents still have concerns.

“We don’t like it. I don’t think anyone local would like it,” Michelle McNally, who lives nearby, said.

The property sits a mile from Grange Hall Elementary School, as well as several new subdivisions, and people who live in the area started a Facebook page opposing the landfill expansion.

“We want them to repeal their decision. We want them to defer their decision until we have the information we need, and they have the information they need to see if this landfill is an appropriate location for Chesterfield County,” Sagstetter said.

Board member Dorothy Jaeckle, who voted in favor of the expansion, said the board was advised by their attorney that if they denied the expansion the county would open itself to a lawsuit it could not defend.

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