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Proposed landfill in south Kansas City a concern for businesses, residents, schools and cities

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Posted at 6:28 PM, Feb 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-07 19:28:43-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo — The possibility of a new solid waste landfill in South Kansas City is raising concerns from cities, schools, residents and business owners in the area.

The planned landfill will sit on privately-owned land within a 960-acre location, with Peterson Road on the west, Horridge Road on the east, Missouri 150 Highway to the north and 155th Street to the south.

“I just think it’s short-sighted for Kansas City to put a landfill in right here in an area that is so beautiful that is enjoyed by many people in the metropolitan area,” said Scott Ward, owner of Be Free Family Farm.

Scott and Jennifer Ward bought their family farm 10 years ago with the vision to create a unique rural getaway experience for visitors. Since then, they have developed 22 and a half acres of land into a certified agro-tourism facility that offers a venue for weddings, private parties and farm to table dinners. The business also hosts events year-round like pumpkin patches and yoga on the farm. It is also home to an on-site allergen-free bakery that outsources to the city.

Ward is concerned a new proposed landfill nearby will jeopardize what they have built.

“I just can’t imagine people coming here to mediate, do yoga and things like that and just have that smell," Ward said. "Cause the winds come predominantly from the Southwest, so that means that we’re gonna get the wind blowing that smell right onto our farm.”

Ward says he is just one voice.

There are a lot of entities at stake, including a state park, Longview Lake, several elementary schools and bordering cities.

“It’s likely going to have some kind of degradation on home values, property values in our area,” said Raymore’s Mayor Kris Turnbow.

At least three home sales in the Creekmoor Community fell through since word got out about the landfill. Additional business deal also have fallen through.

“It has an impact on all the other taxing entities — the school district, the fire protection district, the library — that all depend on their life blood coming from property taxes,” said Turnbow.

The governing bodies of Raymore and Belton, as well as the Lee’s Summit School District, have passed a resolution in opposition.

A resolution against the landfill also was proposed by Jackson County legislator Sean Smith, but the county’s Land Use Committee voted Tuesday to hold it until next week's meeting.

Residents also are encouraged to call their state legislators regarding Senate Bill 590 and House Bill 909

The bills, if passed, would give surrounding cities more say in the landfill decision.

“We’re in a joining municipality that can kind of dictate within a half a mile of our border whether we approve of the plan for a landfill or not," Turnbow said. "Our intent is try to widen that to a one-mile barrier and that would one, that would eliminate this land altogether.”

The developers will have to go through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources to get a permit. KSHB 41 checked with the agency and s they have not yet received a request from the landowners.

“If they put it there, we’re just gonna have to deal with it,” said Ward.

Raymore will be hosting a public meeting to discuss the proposed landfill at 6 p.m. February 16th at Centerview Event Space, 227 Municipal Circle.