Mansfield settles to get medical waste company out of town

The City Council agreed Monday night to pay $475,000 to Dallas-based RedAway, and the company agreed to give up its plan for a medical waste processing facility in the city.

“It was a great opportunity to do the right thing for the citizens of Mansfield,” Mayor David Cook said.

The money from the general fund is to reimburse some of the company’s expenses in engineering and designing an application to operate a 15,000-square-foot facility in Mansfield Industrial Park.

Cook said spending the money “is necessary for the future development of Mansfield.”

The city’s suit against RedAway was dropped as part of the settlement.

Initial plans were for the facility to take medical waste, including needles and vials of non-narcotic drugs, and using a super-heating process, sterilize the items to make them safe for landfill disposal.

The facility was never going to have an incinerator, so it would not dispose of biological and pathological waste, including narcotic drugs, infectious substances and body parts, RedAway CEO Justin Smith said earlier.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality approved the company’s request to operate in Mansfield in February, but residents and community leaders opposed the approval, citing concerns about health, odors and a possible decline in property values.

City administrators asked the state agency to overturn its decision but that was denied. They then sued the company.

RedAway used the facility for office and truck maintenance but never processed or received waste, City Attorney Allen Taylor said.

RedAway officials released a joint statement with the city: “Both the City and RedAway officials are pleased to have the matter resolved in the best interest of all parties involved.”

The Economic Development Corporation has taken over RedAway’s remaining three years on a lease.

In other business, the council approved hiring an architect to design an indoor sports complex called Fieldhouse USA. Magee Architects is to design the complex on city-owned land, which has not yet been selected.

Cook said the deal is not final but he is “ecstatic with the probability.”

The facility is to include eight gymnasiums, 12 volleyball courts, basketball courts, offices, a concession area and more.

It’s a public-private project: The city will build the facility and own the land and will lease it to Fieldhouse USA, which will operate the building.

This report includes material from the Star-Telegram archives.

Dustin L. Dangli, 817-390-7770

Twitter: @dustindangli