Stench in Pleasant Grove hurts business and home growth

- PLEASANT GROVE, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – The odor that emits from composting piles at the Timpanogos treatment plant has residents and business owners raising awareness about the problem.

People said they can smell the stench from the Timpanogos Special Services District within a five mile radius of the plant.

President of the Pleasant Grove Rotary Club John Stevens said the comments and descriptions of the odor is embarrassing. He is a homeowner in Pleasant Grove and a local business owner.

“We’re not talking about moving TSSD,” he said. “We’re talking about composting and the smell. Either we raise property taxes or increase the amount of businesses here.”

But there aren’t many businesses willing to set up shop in a stink zone.

President of the Utah County Association of Realtors Dean Crandall said the same goes for homeowners.

“I've shown homes and people say, ‘you know what this isn't the place for me,’ and it’s because of the odors,” Crandall said.

Pleasant Grove Mayor Bruce Call wants the composting process taken somewhere else. He said the process of mixing solid waste with green waste creates intolerable fumes that spread into the community.

District Manager of the treatment plant Jon Adams said they want to be a good neighbor.

“The smell is better now than it was a couple of years ago,” Adams said.

Adams said the company has spent millions of dollars trying to reduce to odor through various methods over the years. He noted composting on site helps save operating costs.

“The other options we looked at were expensive,” he said. “It’s a matter of budgeting.

Adams said he would continue to look for ways to improve the smell, but said relocating the compost site was not an option.

A lawsuit was filed against TSSD in September 2012 by the cities of American Fork and Pleasant Grove, in addition to the group “Citizens for Clean Air and Progress.”

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