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Trustees Debate Construction Recycling Guidelines

Village trustee wants to make sure ordinance doesn't set precedence with questionable wording.

In a continued effort to be both pro-environment and pro-business development, the  is in the process of drafting an ordinance that will place guidelines on the recycling of construction and demolition debris.

Village trustees discussed the draft ordinance during Tuesday’s Committee of the Whole meeting, but decided to suspend action pending further research at the request of Trustee Jeff Werfel, who voiced concern over some of the wording.

The ordinance, drafted after reviewing other communities’ ordinances and with input from the Solid Waste Agency of Lake County, proposes a recycling program for any new structures or renovations 2,000-square-feet or greater in size; any size demolition; and any residential or commercial project of four or more individual units.

The ordinance also proposes that 75 percent of construction and demolition debris be recycled, excluding recovered wood.

The catch is the ordinance would not make these requirements effective until a construction and debris recycling facility is located within five miles of the village’s corporate limits, per the proposed ordinance’s wording.

The purpose is to keep participation in the program financially feasible for contractors. Mayor Rhett Taylor said the proposed ordinance would not add any significant cost to contractors.

Werfel, who made it clear he is all for more recycling programs, said he worried the ordinance as worded could make it appear the village is requiring that a construction and debris recycling facility be built within village limits, which could set a precedent.

“I understand why it’s in there,” said Werfel, referring to the 5-mile radius aspect. “It’s a trigger for turning it (the recycling requirements) on, but I don’t want a problem later.”

From his knowledge, said Werfel, such recycling facilities are “quite messy, quite noisy and dusty” and can “vibrate like an earthquake.” Not good for nearby residents, he said.

Taylor assured trustees that the proposed ordinance does not imply a land use right and any application to build such a facility within village limits would be subject to public hearing and would need compatible zoning.

“We don’t have that,” Taylor said of the zoning requirements.

“It’s not granting a 1st Amendment right to build,” offered Trustee Bruce Bassett. “It’s certainly not our intent to create a right to build this facility.”

Werfel, who said he wasn’t comfortable passing the proposed ordinance on to the Village Board for a vote until it was researched further and had some fine tuning, also debated whether the proposed requirement of recycling 75 percent of construction and demolition debris was too high to a mark at which to start.

Trustee Ron Jarvis proposed waiting to pass the ordinance until a facility is actually built. “Let the market feed this,” he said.

Taylor said the village should desire to be proactive and these recycling guidelines soon could become federal or state requirements anyway. “It will be good to have it on the books,” he said.

The matter will be discussed again at a future committee of the whole meeting.

In other committee of the whole actions, trustees voted to forward to the Village Board a request to approve a plat of resubdivision for Atkinson Plaza to accommodate a proposed Auto Zone and an additional lot east of the existing Chase bank.

The proposed resubdivision is nearing engineering approval and Auto Zone is nearing architectural approval. Auto Zone is an allowed use under the GB General Business zoning and annexation agreement.

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