Guam Resource Recovery Partners’ (GRRP) motion for the disqualification of Guam Environmental Protection Agency board chairman Robert Perron and board member Florida Sanchez from the appeal hearing on the denial of the Guatali landfill application was raised in a special board meeting convened at GEPA yesterday.
In a written disqualification request submitted last September, GRRP stated that it expected that “Perron and Sanchez would have recused themselves on their own initiative as required by Guam law, since the law, according to GRRP, requires board members to disqualify themselves from matters where they or their family have a financial interest.”
According to GRRP, “Perron owns and also serves as president of Mr. Rubbishman, while Sanchez is the sister of Simon Sanchez, another owner of Mr. Rubbishman.”
Mr. Rubbishman, according to GRRP, has a contract for the hauling of waste to the federal court receiver’s Layon Landfill. GRRP also stated, “The application to open a competing, private landfill at Guatali threatens Mr. Rubbishman’s profits from the Dandan Landfill contract.”
During yesterday’s discussion, GEPA lawyer R. Happy Rons requested the board to deny the request and to take notice of their decision in an earlier appeal case involving GRRP’s landfill application.
“These two board members participated in the first appeal of the landfill permit denial and there was no evidence, whatsoever, of any bias, or prejudice, or conflict affecting their decision-making process in that identical case,” she said during the meeting.
“Because the legal standard is actual bias, not perceived bias or the appearance of impropriety under Guam law, GRRP’s request for disqualification of chairman Perron and board member Sanchez should be denied,” concluded Rons.
Later, Perron said he will recuse himself but will attend all hearings in order to serve as an alternate juror.
After failing to meet specific requirements set by Guam law and Guam Solid Waste Rules and Regulations on financial assurance, post-closure care, and management of leachate, the permit application submitted by GRRP to build a municipal solid waste landfill in Atatano area, Santa Rita was denied by GEPA on Aug. 9.
More than two weeks later, GRRP filed a notice of intent to appeal, disputing GEPA’s earlier conclusion by stating that the “decision contains numerous factual and legal errors that must be corrected by the GEPA board and that its remaining determinations are without support.”