In conjunction with Rutherford County Government, The Murfreesboro City Council unanimously approved the selection of Gershman, Brickner and Bratton (GBB) as the strategic plan consultant to develop a 20-year plan for solid waste collection and disposal in Rutherford County.
GBB was selected under a competitive sealed proposal released March 29, 2016 and received May 5, 2016. The City’s share of the cost, developed through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), is $125,050. The total shared cost is $250,100. Other cities in Rutherford County, Smyrna, La Vergne and Eagleville, could share in the cost if they elect to participate in the decision-making phase of the study.
Privately-owned Middle Point Landfill on East Jefferson Pike in Walter Hill, where 19 counties, including Rutherford County have disposed solid waste since 1989, is expected to close in approximately eight to nine years. Middle Point opened in 1987. Murfreesboro Mayor Shane McFarland and Rutherford County Mayor Ernest Burgess organized a planning committee in April 2015 to address plans for disposing solid waste when Middle Point reaches capacity no later than 2025. The committee concluded that a strategic plan guided by a consultant was necessary.
The committee defined the consultant’s scope of work to include:
- Defining a baseline of the existing solid waste management operations.
- Identifying, analyzing and evaluating options.
- Developing strategy recommendations.
- Prepare an action plan for the first two to five years.
Under an agreement negotiated in 1995, both the City and County have received free disposal of solid waste. The County receives an annual host fee of $1.20 per ton for receiving out-of-county solid waste disposed at Middle Point Landfill. In 2014, more than 71 percent of the 909,125 tons of solid waste received at Middle Point Landfill came from 18 counties outside Rutherford county.
A number of options for disposing of solid waste by the City and County have been discussed, including recycling, transferring the waste out-of-county, a mixed-processing facility, gasification, and waste-to-energy. The committee determined that studying the viable and complex options requires competent expertise in the solid waste industry.
The study by GBB is expected to take eleven months.
For more information on the Solid Waste Department, visit the department webpage here.