Commissioner’s idea on the right track

Published 12:00 am Sunday, April 13, 2003

Earlier this week, two residents of Uniontown expressed concern about a landfill project

near their town. To them, this landfill issue is about money and greed &045;&045; and about the stench of sour chicken riding the winds of southern Perry County.

For the citizens of Uniontown so concerned about this project, they bring to light two important issues.

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First, they believe the hazardous conditions generated from a landfill will wreak danger on generations to come. They believe the environmental hazards of incoming garbage are just too great a threat to the livelihood of the people who will one day call Uniontown their home.

Secondly, opponents of a landfill say the proposed site for this dump rests on an old slavery cemetery. They want the Alabama Historical Commission to declare the site a state landmark, ending any hopes of putting a trash pile on a revered plot of land.

The arguments, taken at face value, sound like reason enough to discourage building any sort of landfill in the area. As we all know, however, there is always another side to the story. Such is the case in the Uniontown landfill fight.

Johnny Lee Flowers, chairman of the Perry County Commission, doesn’t mind standing at the forefront of this issue. He advocates building the landfill, and in an interview earlier this week with The Demopolis Times, didn’t shy away from a single question. In fact, he brought questions up even before they could be asked.

Those who bring forth all the points before they’re asked believe in what they’re doing, no matter what the objection.

Perry County &045; like so many others in our region &045; does have a financial problem. Unemployment numbers are higher than any pile of garbage. When companies like Hyundai and Nissan come calling for industrial sites, Perry County doesn’t get the first mention.

We believe Flowers is on the right track. Sure, there’s a financial gain in bringing the landfill to Perry County, but those of us who drive through Uniontown can probably all agree that something needs to be done for that local economy.

Trash may not be as sleek as an auto plant, but if it’s managed properly and generates a profit for the community, it has to be considered a growth opportunity.

Whether or not Flowers and the commission fail on this issue will be determined by who provides the best answers. If the landfill is a bad idea, then so be it &045;&045; just don’t stop working to make that county better.