BFI Waste Systems of North America, Inc. v. Martinez Environmental Group
93 S.W.3D 570, 2002.TX.0008299
In the Court of Appeals Ninth District of Texas at Beaumont
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This case involves an urban landfills application to permit a major expansion. As cities grow, area landfills reach capacity. Attempts to obtain new landfill space, although necessary, are always unpopular with nearby landowners. BFI operates a landfill in east San Antonio. After several incremental expansions, it applied to the Commission for an expansion permit that would more than triple the landfills size and allow it to operate for approximately fifty-seven more years before it reached capacity. Nearby residents formed an organization, Martinez Environmental Group, to oppose BFIs permit application. They were joined in their opposition by the nearby City of China Grove and an adjacent business owner Don McKenzie (collectively MEG). After a contested case hearing, the Commission approved BFIs application and issued the expansion permit. MEG then sought judicial review in Travis County district court. See Tex. Govt Code Ann. §§ 2001.171, .176 (West 2000). MEG claimed among other things: (1) that the permit approves a site operating plan that is not detailed enough to comply with Commission rules; (2) that BFI was required, and failed, to prove that it was entitled to a permit of lifetime duration at the contested case hearing; and (3) that evidence was improperly excluded at the contested case hearing. The district court agreed with MEG on the first two issues and remanded the case to the Commission with detailed instructions. The court did not rule on MEGs evidentiary complaints. We agree with the district court that the site operating plan is insufficient and affirm that part of its judgment. We disagree with the district courts ruling that the Commission misinterpreted its own rule regarding the life of the site, reverse that part of its judgment, and render judgment reinstating the Commissions decision on the sites duration.
- Category: Law
- Published: Nov 21, 2002
- Publisher: LawApp Publishers
- Seller: Innodata Book Distribution Services Inc
- Print Length: 20 Pages
- Language: English