Judge will hear plea to dismiss suit over Conecuh landfill

Published 8:37 am Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A judge will hear arguments today on a motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the Town of Repton against a proposed landfill near the small community.

The hearing, to be held in Evergreen at 11 a.m., will be presided over by Judge Burt Smithart of Bullock County, who was appointed after local judges recused themselves.

Repton filed a lawsuit April 20, two days after the Conecuh County Commission voted 3-2 to approve a landfill application from Conecuh Woods LLC.

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Conecuh Woods has proposed a 5,100-acre landfill to be located near Repton. The project has been in the works for years, with a grassroots group opposed to the project.

After Repton filed its lawsuit against Conecuh Woods and the Conecuh County Commission, the Escambia County Commission and the cities of Brewton, Atmore and Flomaton filed petitions to join the suit.

Attorney Ed Hines of Brewton will represent all of the local governments.

“We’ve all filed motions to intervene and those will be heard (today) also,” Hines said.

The Repton lawsuit lists five separate counts:

• That the commission’s decision to approve the landfill application is “arbitrary and capricious” because it is inconsistent with the county’s Solid Waste Management Plan.

• That the commission violated the law when it failed to make the host agreement public and open for discussion.

• That the host agreement is not valid because it was not approved by a quorum of the commission.

• That Conecuh County residents were denied due process because they had no say in the application after it was altered.

• That financial incentives hurt the ability of commissioners to be impartial.