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Landfill wastewater complaint filed

Putnam County officials want a judge to make the state Department of Environmental Protection revoke a permit allowing a Hurricane landfill to receive crude MCHM wastewater.

The City of Hurricane and the Putnam County Commission filed the complaint Monday in Kanawha County Circuit Court against the DEP.

The complaint asks the DEP to revoke a previously issued permit. Officials also want the landfill site, located along Sycamore Ridge Road, to undergo remediation.

Putnam officials also filed a motion for a temporary restraining order and an injunction against the DEP to prevent the dumping of more wastewater into the landfill.

The motion notes that the landfill may accept wastewater through Oct. 1 or until it receives 100 tons.

DEP spokesman Tom Aluise wouldn’t comment on the case. He said he hadn’t yet received a copy of the complaint.

Hurricane Mayor Scott Edwards previously has expressed interest in getting an injunction to stop the dumping of wastewater containing crude MCHM, the chemical that contaminated the water supply of nine counties in the Freedom Industries chemical spill.

According to the lawsuit, Freedom Industries has shipped about 40,000 gallons of wastewater combined with sawdust into the landfill since March 7.

“I do NOT want this horrible substance in Hurricane, Putnam County or for that matter anywhere other than a specific landfill that is made to properly accept HAZARDOUS MATERIALS,” Edwards wrote in a Facebook post on his personal page.

Monday’s complaint alleged the DEP never notified officials that these chemicals were stored in Putnam County.

According to court documents, the DEP granted Disposal Service Inc’s request for a minor permit modification so the landfill could accept this waste water.

Officials say the DEP should have notified officials about this request and should have held a public.

The complaint also took issue with the DEP’s reason for approval, where the agency said the chemicals were not hazardous waste under the Resource Conversation and Recovery Act. The complaint noted long-term effects are not yet known.

The complaint says DSI agreed not to accept wastewater after a threat of injunction but says the DEP’s permit allows it to receive wastewater until October.

Putnam County Commissioner Stephen Andes said it was frustrating that the DEP modified the permit and didn’t notify government officials or the public. He said it would have been better if the agency conducted a public hearing.

Andes said commissioners will discuss the lawsuit and the legal process in today’s county commission meeting.

The case is assigned to Kanawha Circuit Judge Paul Zakaib Jr.

Contact writer Andrea Lannom at or 304-348-5148. Follow her at

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