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Lee's Summit landfill closes after reaching trash capacity

Posted at 9:07 PM, Apr 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-16 23:22:00-04

LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. — The Lee's Summit landfill has officially reached capacity and is now no longer accepting trash.

The landfill accepted its last load of trash at 3 p.m. Saturday, after 37 years.

"This used to be a flat piece of ground. Now it's one of, if not the highest point in Jackson County," said Rody Taylor, the owner of KC Dumpster Company.

The state of Missouri regulates when landfills reach capacity. However, Lee's Summit has decided to keep a public disposal area open to the public. KC Dumpster Company is in charge of that operation.

"Any citizen here in the area can come and they can drop off whatever they are trying to get rid of," Taylor said. "They can come down here and throw it into one of our large dumpsters, where it will get hauled from here and eventually make its way to Sedalia."

Items that can be dropped off include lumber, construction materials, furniture, lawn bags and more.

CLICK HERE: To learn more about hours and prices for public disposal area

However, commercial trash haulers, such as the companies that pick up garbage at residents' homes, can no longer use the landfill. These companies are having to find new landfills to dump their trash at.

"Our options are very limited. We have to go to places like Sugar Creek," said Curtis Whiters of Stewart Hauling Trash Company.

41 Action News first reported on a possible closure in September 2018.

At the time, Whiters predicted his company would have to raise rates if the landfill closed. On Tuesday, he confirmed the company had raised prices from $15 per home to $20.

"Now we have to pay more money to dump our trash," Whiters said. "We were paying about $33 a ton for our trash for each load. Now the average is $54 a ton to dump your trash."

The Lee's Summit landfill was the only city-owned landfill in the Kansas City metro, according to Whiters. Now there are only two solid waste landfills in the metro, both owned by major companies.

"I don't know if we can exist another four, five years to be honest," Whiters said.