Playing games with SCMUA

In 2012, Sussex County Freeholders Phil Crabb and Rich Zeoli tried to sell a "crisis" to Sussex County taxpayers:  The county landfill was nearing capacity and would be full by 2018.  Something would have to be done. 

That something was a special "subcommittee" made up of Crabb, Zeoli, and three insiders.  That subcommittee took decision making away from Sussex County’s 24 municipalities -- which had control over the future of waste disposal for the county’s residents -- through each municipality's representation on the Solid Waste Advisory Council (SWAC). 

According to the Herald, the subcommittee had planned to give the Freeholder Board its recommendation by the end of 2012.  The Herald reported that Zeoli said “the subcommittee also is interested in ideas from private businesses as to what to do with trash generated in the county.” 

Another private-public partnership?  Like solar?

As it turned out, the municipalities rebelled at the idea of a subcommittee taking away their decision-making.  The subcommittee was scrapped, the idea of turning the landfill over to private developers was dropped, and -- surprise, surprise -- the threatened closure date of 2018 turned out not to be true and now the county landfill could remain viable until 2066. 

Now Crabb is back at it again.  In a few weeks, he and Freeholder Vohden will lose the power they have over Sussex County -- the power they've exercised since 2011, when they assumed control over the Board and came to an arrangement with the then County Administrator and other establishment figures.  That ended in the dust of the solar scandal.

Crabb and Vohden are desperate to appoint as many allies as they can before the clock runs out.  So they are attacking anyone who gets in their way.  Their most recent victims are the SCMUA board members who were attacked for receiving benefit packages for their work.  The attackers ignored the fact that Crabb, alone among Sussex County Freeholders, receives taxpayer-paid benefits. 

If you thought this transfer of power was going to be dignified, think again.