Sunday, August 15, 2010

Missouri Appeals Court Agrees with Resident on Trash Ordinance.

David Skaer says he and his family do not produce even one scrap of trash, and therefore should be exempt from St. Louis County's trash pickup program. A Missouri appeals court agrees with him, and so far Skaer is the only person to prevail in fighting a ticket for violating the county's trash ordinance.

Skaer, of South County, acting as his own attorney, presented his case to the appeals court in June. Later that month, the court ruled in his favor. But St. Louis County counselor Patricia Redington has problems with the way the three-judge appellate panel conducted the hearing. Last month, she requested a rehearing before the full appellate court. That was rejected Friday; she is now considering an appeal to the Missouri Supreme Court.

In her petition, Redington cited a general mocking tone by the judges, and in particular a comment made by Judge Kenneth Romines.

The judge, during a presentation by assistant county counselor Vic Melenbrink, asked him if the trash plan was not simply intended to reward a political contributor to County Executive Charlie Dooley. Romines said: "You can't compel this man (Skaer) to enter into an agreement with somebody who's one of the county supervisor's contributors. Isn't that what this is about?"

Melenbrink, in an audiotaped account of the hearing, sounded surprised at Romines' comment. Redington, in her request for a rehearing, said: "Bias and bias alone" explains Romines' remark. She called his comment a gratuitous insult and declared: Romines "had no basis for the inflammatory and wrong comment" about waste contracts.

Veolia ES is the hauler in Skaer's trash district. The company has not donated money to Dooley in the current election cycle, which began in January 2009.

Romines declined to comment.

Dooley is a Democrat. Romines was appointed in 1987 to the county circuit bench by Gov. John Ashcroft, a Republican, and to the appellate bench in 2005 by Gov. Matt Blunt, a Republican.

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  1. Anonymous8:40 AM

    St. Louis County shoul have stayed out of other peoples garbage.

    What a mess they have gotten the taxpayers into.

    Only thing left to do, is to trash Dooley!

  2. Anonymous10:17 AM

    It has been almost 2 years since St. Louis County has went down this path.

    How much tax payer money has the County spent on implementing this bad program?

    How much money does the County spend on administrating this program?

    How much money has the County spent and will spend on defending this program?

    In about one year, the county will again bid out and shuffle the 8 trash districts causing more disruption and cost.

    When does the county swallow their pride and admit their error and try and fix this thing?

  3. Anonymous7:46 PM

    What's the big deal. One person is out of the loop. Look at how much effort he took to prove he did not have trash, to save about $13 per month. How many people are going to do that.

    What's the point.