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Dozens attend public hearing regarding proposed medical waste facility in Lower Valley

More than 100 residents attended a public hearing regarding a proposed medical waste facility being built in the Lower Valley. It’s a proposal that has sparked outrage from residents. The facility would be located at 9119 Billy the Kid Street which is near several schools and churches.

The ABC-7 I-Team found the business would not be the first of its kind in El Paso.

More than seven business are licensed to deal with medical waste, according to the Texas Commission on Enviornmental Quality.

Among the businesses listed, Bio-One El Paso, a company that focuses on crime-scene clean up.

Rigo Melendez, who owns Bio-One, told ABC-7 the medical waste business category was more of an overarching term.

Melendez said that his businesses is classified because it deals with the body, specifically bodily fluids, such as blood.

Amarillo-based Medcare Enviornmental Solutions Inc., is the company looking to build the facility.

The business would process between five and 10 tons of medical waste such as body parts, body fluids and other waste, much of which normally gets shipped to Albuquerque.

Medcare Enviornmental president Nord Sorensen said at the public hearing that it would be a super clean facility. He said the state has certain requirements and he assured residents that the technology his facility would use would keep the surrounding areas clean.

District 6 city representative Claudia Ordaz Perez said the city offered Sorensen an incentive package of $40,000 to build the facility at a location near Western Refining. Ordaz Perez said Sorensen rejected the deal, saying he had already invested money in the facility.

Ultimately, the TCEQ will take into account what residents had to say at the meeting, before a decision is made on the application filed by Medcare Environmental.

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