DADE CITY — As expected, someone involved in the case of Angelo's attempt to build a landfill near Dade City has appealed the state's denial. But the twist here is in who filed the appeal: landfill opponents who fought ferociously for the state to reject the request for a permit.
Protectors of Florida's Legacy, which led the charge against the proposed landfill, filed a petition Wednesday asking a judge to hear the case and rule on whether the state Department of Environmental Protection made a proper decision.
In its petition, the group repeats all the environmental concerns previously cited during the permit process, such as the landfill, to be run by a private, for-profit company, would harm drinking water supplies, attract birds, emit bad smells and was not in the public interest.
However, it says it agrees with the DEP's decision and hopes a judge will uphold it.
Group spokesman Carl Roth said Wednesday night that the move was a way to make sure opponents are kept informed and to retain legal standing to appeal further if needed.
"By becoming a party to the process, we essentially can be part of the process," he said. Roth said he also was told it would be easy for the group to withdraw if that became advantageous.
Angelo's, a Michigan-based company, sought to build and operate a 90-acre Class I, household garbage landfill that could eventually cover about 1,000 acres. Opponents, which included wealthy landowners Bill Blanchard and Robert Thomas, fought hard against the project. Both sides spent thousands of dollars on lobbyists.
DEP spokeswoman Pamala Vazquez said that the case would be reviewed to make sure that the appellants' paperwork was done properly and the reasons for appeal were valid. It would then be sent to the state Department of Administrative Hearings, which would assign a judge. A hearing, with testimony, would likely follow.
Angelo's representatives could not be reached Wednesday afternoon.