Main battle looms, financial support still needed to bring the victory home.
(Hempstead: July 9, 2015) After several postponements, the Contested Case Hearing on the proposed landfill permit has been set for November 2, 2015, in Austin.
Assuming no further delays, the case will be heard by two Administrative Law Judges with the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH). The trial is expected to take about two weeks.
This proceeding, to determine the facts, is the last step before the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) Commissioners make their final decision on the permit application.
The proposed Pintail Landfill permit was not stopped by last December’s trail in Waller County.
The December trial was necessary to clarify whether former County officials acted legally in adopting, first, an amended version of the County’s 2011 landfill location control ordinance and, second, a Host Agreement. A jury of Waller County citizens decided that those officials did violate the Texas Open Meetings Act. The issuance of the TCEQ landfill permit remains to be decided. The application was referred to SOAH for a determination of the facts through a “trial” called a Contested Case Hearing (CCH).
Such hearings include depositions, affidavits, expert testimonies, and cross-examinations relative to the many disputed issues in the application.
After the evidence is heard, the SOAH Judges will issue a “Recommendation for Decision” to the Commissioners of the TCEQ.
Along with Waller County, the City of Hempstead and several other Parties, Citizens Against the Landfill in Hempstead (CALH) is preparing for the Contested Case Hearing.
CALH has tried to be prudent with the money entrusted to us so far. For over four years now, the landfill has been fought to a standstill and the Applicant still does not have a permit. Neither does it own the property.
What is left to do?
Up to now, most of the preparation work for the CCH has been done and paid for from donations, fundraisers and settlement funds from the December trail. However, it is estimated that another $300, 000 will be needed by CALH to cover remaining expense of the coming battle.
Without lawyers to finish preparing for the case and to “try” it before the SOAH Judges, the fight will be lost. How can the rest of the necessary money be raised? The same way money has been raised to hold off the landfill for the last four years through cash donations, garage sales and the “We Stand United: dinner/auction fundraiser. That’s how!
Cash Donations – These are great. The money goes straight to the CALH’s bank account. CALH’s activities are performed 100% by volunteers so our overhead is very low. Don’t forget, all donations are tax deductible since CALH is a 501(c) (3) organization.
Garage sales – CALH’s “More than a” Garage Sales are tried-and-true fundraisers. Dozens of volunteers, hundreds of donors and thousands of shoppers have made them significant source of funding for the fight. “Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!” to everybody for your support. And watch for our next garage sale in August.
We Stand United – The We Stand United 3 dinner/auction will be Saturday evening, July 25th at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Hempstead. It is the single largest CALH fundraiser. It is also a chance for area folks and businesses to support the anti-landfill fight in a big way… and knock an equally big hole in the expected cost of finishing the fight in Austin, not to mention having a good dinner and fun-filled evening.
What can you do for We Stand United 3?
SPONSOR A TABLE for your business and friends. Contact Deb Cates at DebCatres@yahoo.com for more information.
DONATE ITEMS FOR LIVE OR SILENT AUCTION. Contact Bill Jordan at 713-724-3804 for more information.
BUY YOUR TICKETS $25 in advance, $30 at the door… if any are left. Tickets are available at:
Amsler & Associates
Coldwell Banker – Waller
VOLUNTEER FOR THE EVENT – Set-up, clean-up, serving, decorating, hosting. Contact StopHwy6Landfill@gmail.com to volunteer.
Time is short. Don’t be left out. Support your county. Come have a good time with us at CALH’s 3rd We Stand United dinner and Auction.