BOISE -- Plans to build a controversial waste-to-energy facility in Ada County have been scrapped.
Ada County and Dynamis Energy, LLC have jointly agreed to terminate their agreements regarding the project. But a lawyer says, the county will not be repaid $2 million already paid to Dynamis.
Ada County and Dynamis entered into an agreement about two-and-a-half years ago to build a waste-to-energy facility at the landfill. The county paid $2 million to Dynamis for the design.
But last year, the controversy began. Neighbors raised questions about health risks. "So, this concerns us as far as exactly what's coming out, and how far it's gonna come down," said Andre Gensburger in May of 2012.
Lawsuits and investigations aimed at the contract itself followed. Then, the county asked for its money back, after two new commissioners were elected.
Friday, just after noon, Ada County released a statement saying the project is off. It goes on to say that the Board of Commissioners and Dynamis representatives have carefully reviewed comments from the City of Boise and the City of Meridian, as well as the financial impacts and advisability of proceeding with the project. The termination comes as a result of a variety of factors concerning the project.
Ada County Commission Chairman Dave Case says it was a tough decision to make, but that they feel it's in the best interest of our constituents. There was a lot of public outcry over the project.
"This decision will help the county move forward in a positive direction with our continued commitment for greater transparency and collaboration," said Case.
"Dynamis is disappointed that the schedule no longer allows for the project to proceed. We wish the Ada County Commissioners success with their municipal solid waste and renewable energy strategies," said C. Lloyd Mahaffey, Chairman and CEO, Dynamis Energy, LLC.
Andrew Schoppe, the lawyer representing the group leading the charge against Dynamis, says his clients couldn't be happier. "Overall, I'd say we're elated."
He does not believe the $2 million will be repaid to the county. "That $2 million is gone."
But Schoppe says his clients prefer that to the project moving forward. "It's a bummer to put it mildly. But at the same time, everyone I've worked with, my clients and all of the people who have been part of the big coalition to stop this project, will take that as a bargain."
Schoppe says he'll have to meet with his clients to see if they want to continue their lawsuit against the county (involving local land use and the county giving a loan to a company), now that the project is off.
This all won't become official until the commissioners meet and sign the agreement. That will be a part of their meeting scheduled for next Tuesday at 9 a.m.