Congress Prepares To Face The Debate On Flow Control

Washington, D.C. - Congress will address flow control legislation early next year, Rep. Al Swift (D-Wash.) said at a November hearing on waste flow control issues.

The flow control debate is not go-ing to go away, Swift said. There-fore, we must "make good public policy out of a complex and controver- sial issue."

A variety of interest groups spoke before members of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Transportation and Hazardous Ma-terials.

Steve Goldstein, the Snohomish County, Wash., Public Works De-partment project specialist, presented a "unitized" proposal to the subcommittee. In his proposal, local go- vernment can exercise flow control if government has outstanding financial commitments for solid waste projects and if the disposal facility has been selected through an open competitive bidding process.

Representatives from North Car-olina, Minnesota and Indiana also introduced legislation to address lo-cal government's inability to implement flow control ordinances.

Other organizations that testified included: the National Association of Counties, the National League of Cit-ies, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA), Friends of Locally Owned Waste, Integrated Waste Services Association, Ogden Projects, Brown-ing-Ferris Industries, the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries and other recycling trade groups.

The director of the Environmental Protection Agency's Municpal and Solid Waste Division, Bruce Weddell, said he expects the Environmental Protection Agency to present its findings on the flow control hearings to Congress in September 1994.

Swift said the report will be too late to help legislators. "Congress will do something early next year," he explained.

In early 1994, the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to rule on flow control.