Warren Mayor James R. Fouts formally requests that the office of the Attorney General’s Office conduct a full investigation of the Freedom Hill County Park landfill illegal dumping.Dear Attorney General Schuette:
As the Mayor of Warren, Michigan’s third largest city in population, I am writing to request that your office conduct an investigation of the Freedom Hill County Park landfill illegal dumping.
Although the closed landfill is not located in the City of Warren, our city is a member of the South Macomb Disposal Authority (SMDA) that is responsible for the maintenance of this landfill. Warren’s percentage of this cost is 47 percent with the remainder of the costs going to other Macomb County cities that are SMDA members. The SMDA has spent over $3 million to remediate the landfill to meet M-DEQ requirements.
Warren Mayor James Fouts’ request centers around the decision of Mark Hackel, Macomb County Executive, to allow a contractor to illegally dump road excavation materials at the landfill without any permission to do this from the SMDA or the Michigan DEQ.
At least 200,000 yards of materials have been dumped at the closed landfill in violation of a 2005 consent decree with the M-DEQ that mandated that no action could be initiated at the Freedom Hill landfill without approval of the SMDA and the M-DEQ.
The following are excerpts from a corrective action plan for the landfill as a result of the illegal dumping prepared for the SMDA by Anderson, Eckstein and Westrick, Inc. and TRC Environmental Corporation on November 30, 2016. This corrective action was necessary because of the illegal dumping at Freedom Hill approved by County Executive Hackel:
Clearly, Mr. Hackel and the contractor had not planned or undertaken any corrective action during or after the illegal dumping.
The investigation requested by Warren Mayor James Fouts should address the following questions:
This situation could have resulted in an environmental disaster in our county. It is not enough to excuse Mr. Hackel’s actions by referring to the corrective action plan now underway. Illegal actions by public officials must have consequences to avoid actions like this in the future.
City of Warren Mayor
James R. Fouts