Powell Butte garbage franchise question delayed yet once again
Potential litigation and the fact that the applicant has not received a mandated county conditional use permit halts all actionThe request for such an agreement was made by Bobb Breck, owner of Powell Butte Disposal a couple weeks ago. Breck started picking up garbage in the Powell Butte area about two years ago. His customers are those residents that Prineville Disposal Inc., the holders of the franchise to haul garbage within the city limits, were not servicing.
Breck had approached the county, saying he has about 300 customers and would like to expand his business. To do so, with a franchise agreement in hand, he would qualify for lower interest rates on capital improvement loans.
During the Sept. 26 county court session, County Planning Director Bill Zelenka informed the court that before any agreement is signed, a land use issue should be resolved. According to Zelenka, Powell Butte Disposal does not currently have a land use approval, a permit to operate a home business. By county ordinance, anybody doing a business has to have a conditional use permit from the county. At that same meeting, Commissioners Mike McCabe and Jerry Crafton, obviously supportive of Breck's request, approved a motion to grant the franchise to Powell Butte Disposal on the condition that the permit issue is resolved and after the county's legal counsel approves the agreement.
County Judge Scott Cooper, saying that he wanted to give the county legal counsel more time to look into the legal side of franchise agreements, and time to get the land use issue resolved, pushed though a motion to table a vote until later. After conferring with legal counsel and others, McCabe later formally withdrew his motion to approve the request.
"Bill Zelenka recommended not granting the franchise without a conditional use permit," McCabe explained his later action. "It probably won't be a problem getting a permit, but it's best, I think, to wait. Plus," he said, "we got additional information that caused us to hold back. There is potential litigation involved if we had gone ahead with it. We decided to regroup and look at it again."
McCabe said he wasn't sure when the matter would come before the court again, but the public will be notified when it does.