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Dumped: County drops Monroe reps from landfill board
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MONROE - Green County removed the two City of Monroe representatives on the solid waste management board - an expected move in the entities' stalemate over the landfill.

The Green County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to remove the two city representatives from the board that oversees the county's transfer station near Brodhead, where trash is taken before being transported to Janesville for burial.

Removing the positions, which was tabled earlier this summer, caps more than three years of haggling between the city and county over the transfer station. Monroe is the largest community in Green County, and the county has maintained its membership is needed to keep the operation viable. Monroe, for its part, has said that it is subject to unexpected charges from the county, and it can save as much as $50,000 annually by taking its trash elsewhere.

Monroe withdrew its membership to the transfer station in January although it continues to haul city-collected trash there. As a non-member, the city is allowed to haul its trash there, but it is charged a higher non-member rate of $55 per ton.

Recent negotiations over a new contract have produced little progress, both sides have said. Last week, the city rejected the county's proposed contract, saying nothing was changed from a previous version and its concerns were still not addressed. The common council agreed to continue taking its trash to the transfer station as a non-member but will begin looking for an alternative.

The county board's vote decreases board membership from 11 members to nine. Under the previous wording, the ordinance specified the two seats assigned to Monroe were for the director of public works and the common council president, or a substitute appointed by the mayor. Most recently, Monroe aldermen Brooke Bauman and Charles Koch represented the city on the board. The rest of the board is comprised of five county board members and four citizen members.

The ordinance now stipulates that those citizen members must be appointed from municipalities that are contracted members of the transfer station.

Most county committees have about five members, county supervisor Harvey Mandel said.

He expressed regret at the failed negotiations, saying Monroe has failed to see the benefit of using the transfer station. For example, he said, the city could be bringing its cardboard, saving money and even earning some back.

The people who will be hurt are Monroe residents faced with higher tipping fees when they dispose of items, particularly roofing materials, at the landfill, he said.

"This has gone on long enough," he said. "We're just not getting anywhere.

He said the transfer station would still like to see Monroe as a member.

"I hope in time things can come back around," he said.