Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Old news worth remembering

The following will appear somewhere in tomorrow's Picayune:
In 2001, Stumpf and Woods formed a joint venture and submitted the only proposal to operate the new facility. In the final days of the Morial administration in early 2002, they signed a deal under which -- provided the landfill received a state permit -- they would keep 97 percent of the proceeds, with the city getting the other 3 percent.

I hope the Picayune isn't getting back into the old habit (that Adrastos* and I used to scream about) of emphasizing Morial connections and downplaying Nagin connections:

Morial pals fail to clean up in deal
By Gordon Russell

(scroll down, until you reach)
Officials with the Nagin administration would not respond to questions about whether they have sought to renegotiate the Old Gentilly landfill deal.

Bob Brickner, a Virginia consultant who often helps governmental entities negotiate landfill deals with private firms, said he would have pushed for the city to receive a substantially higher share had he been hired for negotiations.

That little tidbit was buried deep in a story about Morial pals -- like Nagin business associate Roy Rodney.

The Nagin administration also engaged in some convoluted reasoning to defend the landfill's operation:
(yet another)Nagin spokesman David Robinson-Morris said it's the city's position that the landfill "was never technically 'closed.' "

The argument apparently rests on the fact that the landfill was ordered closed -- and stopped accepting trash as a result -- but had not completed the closure process required by the state, which involved placing a layer of clay atop it. During the 1990s, New Orleans voters approved a bond issue that in part was to pay for the clay cap, but the work was never finished.

But for the purposes of zoning, city law offers definitions of "open" and "closed" that have nothing to do with state environmental law.
Times Picayune

Also worth remembering, Cynthia Willard-Lewis was a forceful advocate for the New Orleans East Vietnamese Community's demand that an eastern New Orleans landfill be closed. But that was the Chef Menteur Landfill, owned by Waste Management, not the Old Gentilly Landfill, owned by AMID/Metro.

*Couldn't find the post that I had in mind. One thing that I will say for blogger, I'd rather search for a vaguely remembered post on blogspot than on some of the other blog services.

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