County hasn't filled vacancy, supervisor a repeated no-show

It was only a shadow of its former 10-member self, but the Del Norte Solid Waste Authority Board was back in business Tuesday.

Two city representatives and a county supervisor chose a chairman and approved a contract for hauling abandoned vehicles - an action the authority hasn't been able to take since the expiration of the 10-member board after its last meeting Oct. 23.

Supervisor Martha McClure and City Council members Rick Holley and Kelly Schellong conducted the meeting as the board reverted to its five-member form. That's supposed to include two City Council members, two county supervisors and one public citizen appointed by the other four.

While the City City appointed Holley and Mayor Rich Enea to the board recently (Schellong sat in for the absent Enea on Tuesday), the Board of Supervisors has not made any appointments. In January, a majority of supervisors said they did not wish to extend the existence of the authority, which oversees solid waste and recycling efforts throughout Del Norte, as well as environmental monitoring of the closed Crescent City Landfill.

Lacking new county members, the board's configuration reverts to its five-member board, according to its attorney, Martha Rice. The county's two members at that time were McClure and former Supervisor Leslie McNamer, who lost her bid for re-election in November.

On Tuesday, the board selected the absent Enea as its chairman. McClure asked the board to defer to the full county Board of Supervisors before selecting a vice-chair.

"We're kind of in limbo right now," said Schellong, adding that the former board chairman, Supervisor Gerry Hemmingsen, had canceled two previous meetings and a third was canceled due to conflicting schedules. "We are still in business and need to take care of business and that's why this meeting today was important."

As for appointing a fifth member from the public, Holley asked Solid Waste Authority Director Kevin Hendrick to put together a procedure for making that appointment.

Board members voted 3-0 to enter into a five-year contract with Northcrest Auto Center to haul away abandoned vehicles.

Northcrest Auto's bid was not the lowest, but the lowest bidder did not have the proper land use permits required to store vehicles, Hendrick said. One of the requirements in the authority's request for proposals was that the contractor have a storage yard.

The board also approved a $22,715 agreement with Santa Rosa-based EBA Engineers to provide environmental services at the closed Landfill.

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