Gregory Canyon Ltd. Solid Waste Permit Put On Hold

August 10, 2010

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                              CONTACT:    Doug Elmets
Tuesday, August 10, 2010                                                                (916) 329-9180

PALA, CA  – In yet another setback for the proposed Gregory Canyon Landfill, Gregory Canyon Ltd.’s (GCL) application for a permit to operate the landfill has been put on hold by the County of San Diego. 

The County’s Local Enforcement Agency had deemed the application “complete and correct” on July 23, but after the Pala Band of Mission Indians and Natural Resources Defense Council sent letters identifying numerous mistakes in the application and asked for a public hearing on the issue, the County rescinded its determination and instead found the application to be “incomplete.”  For example, although the application was required to show current evidence of financial responsibility, the County approved an application that relied on financial assurances from 2001.

“The County made a huge mistake by initially issuing this solid waste permit back in 2004 because Gregory Canyon is the worst possible location for a landfill,” said Robert Smith, Chairman of the Pala Band of Mission Indians. “We want to make sure that this time the County is really looking at a comprehensive application package that accurately reflects the environmental, financial and cultural impacts that this landfill will have. The County has a duty to make sure new landfills do not destroy important cultural or environmental resources or threaten public health, and it can’t do that unless it has accurate information.”

Superior Court Judge Michael Anello had declared the original permit from 2004 invalid in June because it failed to address all issues required by the California Environmental Quality Act. GCL will now have 180 days to reapply for the permit or have to start the Solid Waste Facilities Permit application again.

The proposed Gregory Canyon Landfill project threatens major detrimental impacts to both surface and ground water, as well as a potential compromise of the two major San Diego County Water Authority pipelines nearby. The proposed landfill site is also located just at the base of two important cultural sacred sites of the local Luiseño people.

Pala Band of Mission Indians

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