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Hutchins splits on 2 special use permits

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JIM WILLIAMS
Staff Writer

HUTCHINS - Citizens living here will have a solid waste transfer center.

They will not have a youth development center.

City council unanimously approved one request for special use permit and denied another during regular session Monday, Feb. 17 at city hall.

Republic Waste Services of Texas, which owns the landfill in Avalon, was granted a special use permit for Duncan Disposal Company to construct a solid waste transfer center adjacent to its location at 1220 Dowdy Ferry Rd., where the zoning is light manufacturing.

Hutchins Planning and Zoning Board had recommended approval, suggesting an addition of a traffic engineer be on hand when design for the project got under way. Council members agreed and voted to approve.

Liberty Heights Community Center was denied its request for a special use permit to operate a youth development center at 302 Palestine St. The P&Z had advised council to deny.

Charlene Baptiste made the request to council for Liberty Heights Community Center's proposed youth development center. Baptiste said their focus was going to be on literacy and outreach.

She said they wanted to establish programs to help with General Education Diplomas, pregnant teens, fitness and athletics such as soccer, football, basketball and tennis.

Five citizens - Joy Brooks,

Tonya Hooten, Kay Taylor, James Hoyt and Elizabeth Raines spoke in opposition to the project.

Brooks suggested using the former Smith Restaurant just off I-45. She told Baptiste Tava Smith is the owner of the property.

Raines said a location other than 302 Palestine St. would be more appropriate.

'Nothing's written in stone,' Baptiste said. 'We're open to looking at other locations.'

City Financial Officer Joe Ed Wallace spoke in opposition to the construction of the landfill operation.

Wallace said he was speaking to the council as a private citizen, who lives near the area of the proposed site. He said his wife's family had owned property there for many years.

He said he understood why the city had to make such a decision.

'This is going to be my most costly night of my life,' Wallace said. 'I will go in debt so these people can come to work here.They say you can't smell the facility. I smell the facility right now.

'There are at least five houses in close proximity. You're putting those home owners in debt when you make your decision.'

Representatives for the company said the solid waste transfer center would be inside 15,000 square feet of wooded area. Landscaping would serve as screening to the facility and the entire property would be fenced.

There would be 770 feet from the roadway to the front of the facility, which would be 25 feet in height. Operational hours would be 4 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Friday and 6 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday.

Entrance and exit for trucks would be from Interstate Highway 45. Traffic there was estimated to be a 13 percent increase.

Company reps said the City of Hutchins would receive more than $10,000 in taxes from the business annually and citizens would have a drop-off area to deposit garbage.

Woodie Brantley of Republic Waste said the facility would be used for loading vehicles with garbage to transport straight to a landfill. Brantley said there would not be any compacting of trash on site.

He said trucks would be sealed and covered.

Ten persons would be employed at the Hutchins facility.

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