KY to fund cleanup of illegal dumping sites

BOONE COUNTY, KY (FOX19) - Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear announces that approximately $2.1 million in grant funding has been awarded by the Kentucky Pride Fund for cleanup of 171 illegal dumps in 29 counties across the Commonwealth.

"Illegal dumping is a major problem that raises significant concerns with regard to safety, property values and quality of life in our communities," Gov. Beshear said. "It is a major economic burden on local governments, which are typically responsible for cleaning up dump sites."

The following counties received grants: Adair, Bath, Breathitt, Breckinridge, Clark, Clay, Cumberland, Green, Hardin, Hart, Henderson, Laurel, Lee, Lincoln, Logan, Magoffin, Marshall, Mason, Meade, Montgomery, Morgan, Owsley, Rockcastle, Russell, Spencer, Warren, Wayne, Whitley and Wolfe.

As part of the grant funding, counties must agree to provide a 25 percent match when it costs less than $50,000 to cleanup an individual, illegal open dump. The Energy and Environment Cabinet (EEC) may waive the 25 percent match on any individual illegal open dump costing more than $50,000 to remediate.

The Division of Waste Management administers the Kentucky Pride Fund to clean up county dump sites. Funding for the program comes from a $1.75 environmental remediation fee for each ton of garbage disposed of at Kentucky municipal solid waste disposal facilities. This "tipping fee," authorized by the 2002 General Assembly under House Bill 174, is collected quarterly and placed in the Kentucky Pride Fund.

The Kentucky Pride Fund is the first legislated and ongoing source of state funding for dump cleanup. Previously, illegal open dump cleanup in Kentucky was primarily funded by county and federal money.

In 2006, Senate Bill 50 changed the reimbursement program to a grant program. The legislation also expanded the scope of the fund to address household hazardous waste collection and recycling infrastructure, in addition to illegal dump and old landfill projects.

Kentucky has made significant progress in addressing the illegal dump issue thanks to this funding, along with statewide cleanup and educational campaigns by local, state and federal agencies, Gov. Beshear said.

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