Burning issues becoming a concern

Local News

VILLA GROVE, Ill. (WCIA) — One business in town could be in danger if the city can’t help it out, but to do that, there would have to be a big change.

Wednesday night the city held a public meeting to discuss options. One could impact the air people breathe. Right now, it’s illegal for Leaf It To Us to burn leftover debris on its property and at the city burn site.

So it’s asking the city to help work around that. Leaf It To Us is in the business of dealing with trees.

“Anything from planting to trimming to removals.”

Now it’s dealing with a big problem.

“Since we’re a commercial business, we can’t burn some of our wood products on site. We have to dispose of them other ways.”

The city and the EPA say it’s illegal to burn on the property, but Brad Drew says he didn’t know that.

“We assumed that we could burn ’cause everybody else in town does. We didn’t realize that you can burn as long as you’re not a commercial business. If you’re a commercial business then you can’t burn.”

The EPA came out to stop them, but they also gave them a possible solution.

“The EPA says what we could do is, if the city would move its burn facility next to our property, because the city owns what’s next to it, we could then use their burn facility for our leftover debris.”

If that happens, they could burn legally. If not, it would burn a hole in their wallet. They say they’d have to pay thousands of dollars each month to have the debris removed. But the city doesn’t know if it’s possible to move the burn site.

“We have to find out what’s required for us and what rules apply to us with the EPA and what we are allowed to do for them. We just don’t know. We have to gather information.”

City leaders say they need to make sure people’s air quality will be safe if they move the burn site. They also said they will be speaking to the EPA soon to figure out all of the regulations.

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