CALIFORNIA IN BRIEF : CASMALIA : Protest Disrupts Hearing on Dumps

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

About 300 chanting, singing, placard-waving demonstrators forced cancellation of a public hearing on an application to build two large landfills in Casmalia in Santa Barbara County. After listening to an hourlong demonstration in the Lakeview Junior School auditorium, representatives of the federal Environmental Protection Agency and the state Department of Health Services called off the hearing to consider Casmalia Resources' requests to resume its landfill operations. In September, the EPA sought to fine the firm $6.2 million for allegedly accepting more waste than it was authorized to handle at the Casmalia landfill. And in late November, the state Regional Water Quality Control Board prohibited the landfill from taking more material. Casmalia Resources subsequently requested permission to resume operation at proposed new sites.

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