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Abstract

Garbage will always ultimately be the government's problem. Evolving environmental standards and state and federal policies will continue to require reasoned responses from local governments and municipal solid waste flow control is a vital cog in many jurisdictions' solid waste management solutions. Without flow control of some form, governments' ability to plan and provide for the most environmentally sound and economically acceptable solutions will wane, leaving the public vulnerable to the vagaries of a private market that does not have a duty to protect the public health and safety. The Carbone decision has blunted one of the local governments chief weapons-legislative flow control-and it appears Congress will not supply an adequate answer for many solid waste systems. More than ever, alternatives to legislative flow control will be needed to enable municipalities to fulfill their solid waste duties, to comply with federal and state mandates, and to provide workable, environmentally-sound, long-term solid waste programs serving the interests of the public health and safety. Local governments must act soon by examining these options and deciding which will best serve the public.

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