In January, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the United Haulers Assoc. Inc. v. Oneida-Herkimer Solid Waste Management Authority case. The haulers association argues that the waste authority, which serves Oneida and Herkimer counties in upstate New York, violated the dormant Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution when it passed ordinances requiring haulers to take their trash to a publicly owned and operated landfill.
Last year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that the ordinances do not violate the Commerce Clause. In a 1994 case, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a city's ordinance requiring collected waste to be brought to a privately owned transfer station. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals drew a distinction between publicly and privately owned facilities.
A ruling by the Supreme Court is expected by July, and Waste Age will have full coverage of the decision.