The Bannock County Solid Waste Department is located south of Pocatello in the Portneuf Gap Area, at 1500 N Fort Hall Mine Road. Our hours of operation are 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., closed Sundays and all legal holidays. We also operate the McCammon transfer station, located on Hwy 30 West, and it is open 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, also closed legal holidays. We operate both the landfill and transfer station with only 16 full-time employees.
Bannock County took over the operation of the landfill in 1979. In October of 1993, the old landfill, which originally opened in 1945, was closed in accordance with the new federal government mandates. A new sub-title D landfill was constructed in compliance with RCRA regulations and opened for operation on October 9, 1993. The construction costs amounted to nearly eight million dollars. Part of this great expense was a specially designed liner that protects the environment by keeping the waste sealed within the ground. Heavy machinery covers the waste daily with six inches of soil to prevent garbage from being exposed to vectors, wind, and the atmosphere.
The total area of the sub-title D landfill is 24.05 acres (1 million ton.) We currently have 13 acres lined (470,000 ton) with a life expectancy of approximately seven years. On an average, we accept approximately 300 tons of waste per day, which is up from an average of 233 tons per day in 1994.
Both our Pocatello and McCammon sites have construction/demolition debris sites. These help to prolong the life of the sub-title D landfill. Acceptable wastes at these sites are concrete, asphalt, bulky wood, branches, limbs, clean yard-clearing or grass trimming wastes.
Our Pocatello site also includes an administration office where extensive, mandated record-keeping is performed. All of the landfill billing and collections is also performed at this site. The billing involves sending out approximately 6,000 bills per month and following up with collections on overdue accounts. The scalehouse technicians must track and screen all incoming loads and identify the type of waste. In addition to weighing and tracking the waste on both the incoming and outgoing truck scales, they also have required record-keeping.
In addition to the above responsibilities, we are now doing freon and oil removal from refrigerated units in a separate building on-site. We have three employees that are certified to perform this procedure, which saves the county approximately $15 per unit by not having to sub-contract the removal. We also hold four household hazardous waste collection events each year in our recycling building. This is a free service provided to Bannock County citizens in an effort to keep the household hazardous waste out of the waste stream. The tires we receive (approximately 6000) are temporarily stored until they are picked up and burned for fuel at the cement plant in Inkom.
We are very proud of our landfill operation. The citizens of Bannock County are very fortunate to have a safe place to dispose of their garbage that protects the environment for our future generations.