The Knox County Nursing Home and Landfill Committee approved the unexpected $44-thousand bill, Tuesday night.
According to the discussion, the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency has decided to implement new water quality tests that were described as being quite costly.
Landfill Administrator Jerry Reynolds tells WGIL that when the bill came in, he was shocked.
“It may have caught all of the monthlies, some quarterlies, and some semi-annuals, and then some of them may drop off, some of them may not show up again, it’s just hard to say,” says Reynolds. “I was quite taken aback when I saw the bill and found out what was involved and that I was not made aware of this in a more timely basis.”
In the last three or four years, the Landfill has budgeted appropriately for the water quality tests, typically around $65-thousand annually, but expenses could now exceed the budgeted amount.
All 23 Landfills in the state of Illinois are required to submit to the water quality tests.
Reynolds tells WGIL the variance and rate of testing is currently making things difficult to predict.
“That’s the information I need to find out and that the committee needs in order for us to make an appropriate budget line item change for the water testing that we’re required to do,” says Reynolds.
Few mechanisms are said to exist to question the tests and their adjoining prices.
The bill was learned of after the Knox County Landfill’s Engineering Firm out of Peoria informed the testing company to conduct them – something committee members said needed more oversight.
The County does not believe at this time they are being singled out due to water quality or other issues.
Reynolds tells WGIL that even so, some of the other landfills will not be as impacted as others due to the services and space provided.
“It will depend on the size of the landfill, it will depend on the number of wells that they have to test, it they’re smaller than us, they will have fewer wells to be tested,” says Reynolds.
Once the testing has been completed, the report is sent to Springfield for review by the Illinois EPA.
Although estimates are still being gathered, the Landfill anticipates a major line item adjustment in preparation for the tests.