Dothan city commissioners are moving forward with a plan to expand the city landfill.
Commissioners agreed on a $484,000 engineering agreement today.
Some residents are against the expansion but City Manager Mike West says the trash has to go somewhere.
"First of all, nobody wants to live close to a landfill and we realize that. Unfortunately we generate garbage and unfortunately that garbage has to go somewhere," West said.
That somewhere is the Dothan Landfill.
"We want to assure everybody if and when we're given permits we'll have to be very stringent federal guidelines to make sure we protect the environment, the groundwater and all that," West said.
Dothan city commissioners have hired C.D.G Engineers and Associates for the design and permitting process.
They'll start by doing geo-technical testing to make sure the site is appropriate for the landfill's expansion.
"We are a long way away from actually building a landfill," West said.
The next 9-12 months will be spent doing background work.
"We have to check and make sure there are no endangered species on the property, we have to look and make sure there are no historical artifacts or anything of that nature. So there's a lot of work to be done before you can actually build a landfill there," West said.
Once the city gets a permit, it will take another year to actually build the expansion.
"There's a lot of preliminary work a lot of federal and state permits and in that process we'll have to do assessments of the property for numerous things that are protected by federal and state laws," West said.
The city finalized the purchase of 182 acres of land for the expansion in early March.
The current landfill is reaching capacity.
Commissioners looking at building a new landfill or taking trash somewhere else but determined expansion was cheaper.