Little progress has been made in the plans to place a transfer station and solid waste landfill just outside of Lisbon.

It's a concept people living around the area have seen before and most are not in favor of. People in and around Madison Township continue to put a stop to what they call a major safety hazard.

As the permitting process continues for Vogel Holdings' proposed landfill that would set up shop along State Route 45 in Madison Township, the community remains active on trying to put a stop to the idea.

"All we can do is just continue to check on their applications and make sure we're really paying attention to the permitting process so we can find and see if there's anything that the community holds special that we can use to keep our area clean," said Jaime Nentwick of Valley River Organizing.

While Vogel Holdings received an air permit from the EPA, its application is being held up in the water permit process by the Army Corps of Engineers. The EPA considers homeowners' concerns before issuing all final permits.

This comes eight years after Rosebud Mining, which previously owned the land, attempted to develop a landfill as well. The plans drew opposition and were eventually abandoned.

"This would have negative impacts on the vitality of our life as well as our property values," said Tiffany Chetock of State Route 45 in Madison Township.

Township officials and those living in the West Point Area have concerns about the plan, particularly with the vast amount of wells and how a landfill could impact water and wildlife.

"There's a lot of people that this would affect their well water and there's no main supply line and nothing coming in for them to hook on to get water," Chetock added. "So that would take millions of dollars to supply that."

"What's it going to do to the farmland?" asked Bub Galbreath of Roller Coaster Road in Madison Township. "Animals that are going to be traveling through? What are they going to be subjected to? Are they going to be carrying things away from there? These are all things they can't tell us is not an issue."

The township had a landfill for years and people who call the rural town home believe they're being taken advantage of. There are several campgrounds around the area along with a wedding venue that could deter visitors to the region. 

"If this is such a great idea, why isn't it closer to some metropolitan areas around here that have greater access to interstate highways," Galbreath added. 'What was the determining factor you're going to come off Route 11 when you have interstate highways? Vogel Holdings thinks this county is going to be a pushover and we're just going to swallow it. It's not happening."

Galbreath referred to a landfill in Amsterdam, Ohio called Apex. He mentioned you can smell odor coming from as far as 5 miles away. He added the Amsterdam community is establishing a lawsuit against the landfill, "because the odor gets so bad. I can be 5 miles away and the smell is God-awful."

Vogel Holdings representatives told 21 News in 2022 that it's their mission to protect the environment and those living nearby and are "going above and beyond EPA requirements throughout this process," according to Vice President of Vogel Holdings Edward Vogel. 

The company proposed a double-liner system for the landfill that includes leak detection.

"From the work I do and what I've been at Apex, those liners can be damaged," Galbreath said. "There's been several fines in regards to them getting damaged."

"Everything is proven to have weak points and eventually over time with the chemicals that will be decomposing in the landfill, it can cause punctures," Chetock said. 'In the leechaid, it's built with concrete, which is a porous material. How do we know just by trusting their word? I don't believe that is good business."

"If you think this is the best these people deserve, you should be ashamed of yourselves," Galbreath added. "I don't want this here."

The township currently has no zoning in place but officials are in the process of implementing a zoning board, which could put a stop to the landfill's ability to move in. Nentwick clarified they are not establishing zoning in the community for the direct purpose of stoping the landfill. 

"We need to talk zoning over and see if it's a good fit for us," Nentwick said. "We need to see if it's something as a whole we'd like to go towards to keep our vision of West Point the way we like it. We want to keep our families safe. Zoning is a great way for the community to say how they want their community to be."

Valley River Organizing wants to work together with the community to host educational sessions for people to decide if the landfill is safe for the community. 

The deadline to apply to be a member of the Madison Township Zoning Board was September 14. 

It is unknown how long all EPA permits will take, which is the golden ticket needed for Vogel Holdings to set up shop.