There are now three fewer private corporations who will get a shot at potentially managing, leasing or owning Cowlitz County’s Headquarters Landfill.
At their Tuesday meeting, the Cowlitz County commissioners announced they sent letters to all eight companies who might end up managing or leasing the landfill. Five of those letters were congratulatory, but North Carolina-based Green Life, DTG Enterprises from Mill Creek, Wash., and Tennessee-based Santek Waste Services were removed from the pool.
The companies left standing are Houston-based Waste Management, San Francisco-based Recology, Canadian company Waste Connections, Phoenix-based Republic Services and Longview-based Waste Control.
There is also still the possibility that the county will retain sole management of the landfill and make changes internally.
Next, the remaining companies will go through another round of interviews and cuts. In January, county officials said there would be public hearings on the landfill’s future in March or April.
The county Public Works Department now supervises landfill operations and turns a profit that has totaled $8 million in 2015-16. The landfill’s disposal rates are among the lowest in the state. However, the county estimates that new regulations to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases will eventually cost $5 million annually. So officials are looking for ways to make the best financial return on the facility.