It's been a little more than a month since the Baker Place Road Landfill closed to the public, and county officials say most residents and trash haulers have made a smooth transition to using private firms or the Richmond County landfill.
Columbia County Engineer Miguel Valentin said the Engineering and Environmental Services department has received about 20 calls from residents about how to dispose of old refrigerators and other bulky appliances, he said.
"In terms of taking (household) trash ... there have been very few phone calls," he said.
Residents who have questions about trash pickup and disposal or want lists of private trash haulers can visit the county's Web site, www. columbiacountyga.gov.
According to the site, residents can take old appliances to the Advanced Disposal waste transfer station at 5734 Columbia Road in Grovetown, or to the Deans Bridge Road Landfill at 4330 Deans Bridge Road in Augusta.
Mark Odekirk, the general manager for Advanced Disposal, said his transfer station has received a 15 percent increase in business from private haulers and the public since the Baker Place Road Landfill closed July 1.
"The same things they took to the landfill they can take to us," Odekirk said.
So far, he said, the feedback from customers has been positive.
The transfer station is open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday and 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. The gate cost to the public is $10 per car and $20 each for trucks and trailers, he said.
About 60 percent of trash taken to the station is transferred to a landfill in Twiggs County near Jeffersonville, and the remaining waste is transported to Richmond County, Odekirk said.
Though the Baker Place Landfill is closed, work there has not stopped. County government waste is still deposited at the site, and the engineering staff is completing a state Environmental Protection Division closure plan to "cap" the site.
The state requires the landfill be capped to prevent seepage of methane gas and other hazardous materials into the groundwater. After it is capped, the county will be required to monitor the site and maintain the slopes for 30 years.
Valentin said his staff will pre-qualify contractors Thursday to determine their capability and legal authorization to perform the closure work. Bidding will begin shortly thereafter, with the landfill officially closing when a contractor is ready to begin construction, he said.
The county will have six months once the landfill officially closes to completely cap the site under EPD rules, Valentin said.
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