MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) — Continuing the saga between Middle Point Landfill and the City of Murfreesboro, the city now says it has identified a new, third contamination site on the East Fork Stones River.
This comes after months of back-and-forth between the two sides, centering on a lawsuit filed by the city against the Middle Point Landfill, accusing the landfill of being a source of air and water pollution resulting in more than 2,000 complaints from residents in less than a year.
Middle Point General Manager Mike Classen has claimed over the past months the lawsuit doesn’t have merit.
“If the city continues to lob baseless accusations at us, we will continue to fight those in whatever court necessary,” Classen told News 2 in October.
The newest contamination site is a spring on the west side of the Middle Point Landfill, commonly known as “Bubba Spring,” just upstream and across from the Walter Hill boat ramp, according to the city.
Murfreesboro sent a written notice to Republic Services, the parent company that oversees operations at the Middle Point Landfill, alerting them to the new contamination site Nov. 21.
This is the third contamination site the city has found that officials claim stems from the Middle Point Landfill. The previous two are an area of surface-level runoff and an underground spring that feeds the river.
Classen has previously claimed that if there is contamination in the river, it is most likely coming from the now-closed Rutherford County Landfill. The city argues this new contamination site is clearly not affiliated with the old landfill site farther south.
News 2 reached out to Middle Point Landfill, which provided us with the following statement:
“The City of Murfreesboro continues to waste taxpayer dollars pursuing meritless claims. The latest allegations related to Bubba Spring are unproven and untrue. TDEC was onsite as recent as last week to inspect the landfill, and specifically, they examined the Bubba Spring area that the city has identified as a source of an alleged “contaminated spring.” Once again, there were no violations found at the site, and as TDEC indicates in their inspection report, no leachate was found in the spring. This is the seventh consecutive inspection by TDEC where no violation was found at Middle Point Landfill.
Further, routine and consistent testing of groundwater confirms no leachate impacts to the springs, and such routine groundwater monitoring was completed as recently as October of this year. We look forward to addressing these meritless claims with the court.”