Throop Council Says No to Landfill

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THROOP -- The operators of a landfill in Lackawanna County received a message from one of the communities it covers. Throop's borough council has officially said no to Keystone Landfill's proposed expansion.

The final decision rests with the state, but the vote by Throop could have consequences for people who live in the region.

Keystone Sanitary Landfill is in both Dunmore and Throop. It is looking to expand to allow 50 more years of garbage there.

While the decision will be up to the state Department of Environmental Protection, Throop borough council will let the DEP know that the landfill expansion does not have their support.

In Throop, the signs are there. People are split on whether the landfill it shares with Dunmore should expand, but Throop's borough council has taken a side, voting to send a letter to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection saying it does not support the proposed expansion of Keystone Sanitary Landfill.

The DEP will make the final decision, but council president Rich Kucharski says council's vote could have real implications.

Kucharski was in the minority. He voted in favor of the expansion. His motivations are mostly financial.

"Given the fact that 90-plus percent of our budget comes from the landfill, you know, there's significant implications for the borough. I mean, to make up that money would be practically impossible," Kucharski said.

Kucharski also says Throop has a lifetime contract with Keystone. The landfill could see the vote as a breach of that contract and take the borough to court.

Throop would have no way to make up that money without raising taxes.

"That's a sad commentary, but it's a fact. Unfortunately, that's the situation we're in, and we depend on that landfill money to operate the borough."

Some residents we talked to say it's time for Throop to find another revenue stream.

"This town has everything. It benefited from the landfill, civic centers, parks, fire trucks, you name it. It did benefit from it, but I think it's time to move on to some other kind of income coming in here because, like I said, I don't know, the landfill keeps getting closer," said William Shevchik.

The proposed expansion could keep Keystone open another 50 years. Other residents say why not keep the cash coming?

"I think, let them expand, why not? And if they don't, they're going to start paying taxes on their garbage here and then they're all going to be starting to complain again anyway," said Walter Marhelski.

The state's Department of Environmental Protection is still reviewing the landfill's proposal to expand it could still be months until there's a decision.


  • I work for THE Landfill

    Mount Margaret is the ideal location for an expansion. Or that eyesore of a junkyard in Dummore that highlights the tour of Dummore/Scranton from I-81.

  • In Your Back Yard

    Or maybe be like Alaska, where they charge the oil companies to do business, then rebate it in checks to every resident Alaskan. Just charge more to dump the trash and send a check to each Throop resident. I can hear the question already — How much are we talking about?

    • Dave Burkette

      Again, education is the best tool to the people who don’t know any better. Do you not understand the effect to Keystone closing down on the entire northeast region of pa??? Not only is throop and its residents going to pay, what do you think will happen to every surrounding community in the area? All their garbage taxes will be hiked ten fold. Listen people, the landfill is there, and whether it’s operational or not, it’s NEVER GOING AWAY. It’ll be there for the next 1000 years. Take advantage of it.

  • Dave Burkette

    On the bright side, maybe throop can save money on court fees when they file for bankruptcy jointly with scranton… Uneducated peasants of throop don’t realize how good they have it. Enjoy the 90% tax hike idiots!

  • Cathy Mcmuffen

    I herd a lot of the so called scrantonians that abandoned – sold there houses and migrated to the surrounding areas to flee the taxes in scranton really want that expansion to happen good luck in tumor valley!

  • In Your Back Yard

    Why not approve it. Starting another location would create new environmental damage. Approving it would concentrate the damage in one location. Truth be told, the worst of it is probably in the bottom of the existing pit. It was placed there before anyone starting checking to see what’s coming in.

  • a sad area

    But…but…but…, I thought that grass covered mountain looks so attractive to the area. It’s blends in so well with Scranton’s stripmined scarred landscape.


  • Gopher Grace

    It may be time to call Senator Clay Davis in from Baltimore to show this council how to get things moving.

  • Wty

    I am proud of councils decision. Let ny keep their own garbage it’s big state and they have plenty of room ….too expand their own landfills.

  • Bob Smith

    I have a suggestion….. How about dumping garbage on edge of remote roads? Send the load to North Korea? Or Saudi Arabia where, they have lot of room in the vast desert too.

  • Donamick

    What a complete waste of taxpayers money the f****** mob boss is going to win in the end should have just said yes

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