By Seth Daniel
City Councilor Sal LaMattina vowed this week that the Casella Trash Transfer station is a dead proposal.
The trash transfer station was the subject of a raucous public meeting in Charlestown last week, where virtually no one voiced any support for the measure. A previous meeting in December drew a small crowd that was undecided on the proposal.
This week, LaMattina said any such proposal would have to go through the City Council, and that current proposal is not going anywhere.
“It’s not going to happen,” he said. “I want to assure the Charlestown residents that Casella will not move forward without City Council approval. As long as I’m city councilor, that will not go forward without the approval of the people of Charlestown. It doesn’t have my support. It doesn’t have the mayor’s support, and it certainly doesn’t have the community’s support.”
The City currently has two trash transfer facilities, and there is an existing moratorium preventing the creation of any new such facilities. In addition to community support and state permits, Casella would have had to convince the Council to lift its moratorium.
LaMattina said that was not going to happen, and that Casella would likely not even request it at this point.
He said he hopes that the company will go out and get involved in the community – noting that in the nearly two decades they’ve been in Charlestown, they’ve not reached out to the community.
“Hopefully now Casella will go out and be part of the community,” he said. “He’s been there for 18 years and hasn’t been involved in the neighborhood at all. At least now, he can go out and get involved. Again, I want to assure the people of Charlestown it will not move forward.”
Casella has already operated a recycling facility in two buildings since the 1990s, but said it is largely underutilized and the company sees a tremendous need and business opportunity for a solid waste trash transfer station. The facility would largely operate, company officials said, in the night hours and would use Sullivan Square and Rutherford Avenue as access points.
It would add 80 truck trips per day to what is already 140 truck trips that are brought to the recycling facility. In all, the proposal would put a total of 220 truck trips to the Casella facility for recycling and trash hauling.