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Public Service Commission Approves Request

By Staff | Mar 23, 2016

NEW MARTINSVILLE – Lackawanna Transport Co.’s application permitting the construction of a dedicated drilling waste cell at the Wetzel County Landfill was approved Friday by the West Virginia Public Service Commission.

The PSC also dismissed a complaint filed by the Wetzel County Solid Waste Authority, opposing the construction of the cell.

The PSC issued a 43-page order Friday explaining its decision.

This development occurred after a federal lawsuit against Solid Waste Authority Chairman Bill Hughes was discussed at the March 3 authority meeting.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court by Lackawanna, claims that Hughes used his position as authority chairman to intervene “for his own personal reasons, but purportedly on behalf of the Authority, in proceedings before the Public Service Commission of West Virginia” without the authority’s approval.

At the March 3 meeting, the authority voted to withdrawal its motion to intervene in the PSC case.

In its order, the PSC noted the March 3 withdrawal motion made by the authority.

The PSC wrote that on March 14, Lackawanna filed a supplemental brief advising the commission that the Wetzel County Solid Waste Authority had voted to withdraw from the case and had directed the authority’s co-counsel, Robert Rodecker, to take the necessary steps to implement the withdrawal. Lackawanna claimed that Rodecker then responded with a letter to the WCSWA indicating that it would be inappropriate for him to take the steps requested because he was co-counsel and had not discussed the withdrawal with lead counsel, Silas Taylor.

According to the PSC, Rodecker had filed a response letter with the commission on March 16 stating that neither he, nor Taylor, were consulted prior to the March 3 vote and that neither attorney were present at the meeting when it took place.

However, the commission noted in its order, those matters would not affect its jurisdiction to dispose of the cases.