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Re: [greenyes] any laws requiring public tours of landfills?

Hi Toni, Wayne, and all others who have responded, (I love this email community!!),

The situation is this. Eco-Cycle has been running a huge School Recycling Program for over 15 years, and we have a program called the Follow The Waste Stream Tour that is very popular with our local teachers. We take busloads of kids to the landfill, then the recycling center, then a local grocery store to teach them how to make choices while shopping. Last year we took 900 kids and adults to the landfill.

Over the last five years, Eco-Cycle has really turned up the volume on "the problems with landfills" as a community advocate, but we are NOT allowed to be political in our school programs. It's all science based, or else we'd be booted.

Now we're involved in a local landfill expansion fight, and that has proven to be the last straw for our local landfills, all of whom are privately owned. We got shut out last week while a yellow school bus was on the way there! I have been successful in getting the landfill to reverse their decision because I was ready to go public and had enlisted a State Legislator and the Local County Commissioner to join me... it would have been a big public media mess for them, so we've been able to resolve it quietly this time. But I see the trend here in my backyard, and across the nation ... I think the landfill industry is going to try to pull the curtain closed on public scrutiny of their activities for fear that the USA will go the route of the EU and start squeezing their future into a smaller role.

So, I don't know how we do it, but I like what Toni Stein sent me about First Amendment Rights related to "community" issues, and since landfills, both public and private, have impacts OFF their sites and must be regulated and inspected by public officials, then maybe we all have the right to inspect what our inspectors are inspecting?

My goal is to keep the kids going to the landfill because they love it and they are shocked by it ... and that helps recycling.

Eric Lombardi
Executive Director
Boulder, CO

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