Friday, March 19, 1999
NESWC settlement to cost $162,000
In 1997, Wheelabrator Technologies contended that member communities of the North East Solid Waste Committee (NESWC) were responsible for the $35.5 million retrofit required for the North Andover plant to meet the 1990 Clean Air Act amendment requirements. After two years of negotiation, NESWC and Wheelabrator have signed an agreement to split the costs, with Wheelabrator picking up 52 percent of the tab. NESWC is a coalition of 23 Massachusetts communities with a 20-year service agreement for non-recycled solid waste disposal.
Jim Acton, executive director of NESWC, stated that Carlisle's contribution toward the total cost is $162,000, payable as a lump sum in early May. The town's share could have been close to twice this amount if a settlement had not been reached. According to town administrator David Demanche, Carlisle has sufficient funds in the "tip stabilization account" to cover these costs.
Carlisle regularly puts aside funds in this account for the future when, according to the contract, costs per ton will rise significantly. Carlisle's fiscal year 1999 per ton charge is $97.67, which Acton identified as about double the market price. In the later years of the contract, the town will pay a minimum of $160 per ton due to the back-end loading of the plant's debt structure, rather like a balloon mortgage.
When asked if "the rats could abandon this bloated ship," Acton replied that lots of folks have looked for an open knothole for a long time, but none has been found.
The NESWC project was developed and accepted by the state during the early '80s. Wheelabrator is the parent company of Massachusetts Refusetech, Inc., the plant operator, and is wholly owned by Waste Management, Inc.
© 1999 The Carlisle Mosquito