Homeowners And Landfill At Odds Over Whether Buyout Offers Were Promised

By Jeff Neumeyer

July 9, 2013 Updated Jul 9, 2013 at 4:51 PM EST

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) --- Some homeowners near a Fort Wayne landfill say their property values are falling off the table; a problem they claim could be fixed if landfill management delivered on an old promise.

The homeowners insist “Republic Services Incorporated” told them that the company was going to buy them all out.

But representatives of the landfill don't remember it like that at all.

Folks on Haber Drive live on the perimeter of the big sanitary landfill off Smith Road.

Nathan Creager says his home's value has dropped by $25,000 since he purchased it nine years ago.

Bryan Dalman, who owns a place nearby, says he wants to sell, but can't get a decent offer.

Both claim the landfill pledged to purchase their homes and others, but have done an about face on the issue.

They feel it's a case of big business taking advantage of the little guy.

" That's basically what we're looking for, is them to uphold their promise that they made to us, and you know, do the right thing, because we're just stuck in the middle of a situation and can't go anywhere," said Dalman, who purchased a home elsewhere and is currently making payments on both houses.

" I tried to re-finance my house, they won't do it, because the value is so low. There's nothing I can do. I watch the neighbors try to sell, I can't sell," said Creager.

Republic Services Inc. insists the landfill is not at fault.

An attorney representing “Republic” says his client adamantly denies that it promised to buy out the properties in question, claiming budgetary constraints would not have allowed such a plan to take place.

Paperwork from a county board of zoning appeals hearing in 2005 does not contain any discussion of buyout offers.

The Allen County Department of Planning Services says the company was not required to purchase anybody's property as a condition of getting expansion approvals.

Creager says he knows what he was told, and that because of the dispute, he's about to lose his home to foreclosure.




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