Issue: Historic deal between the City and County of L.A. to share Sunshine Canyon Landfill
The permitting of a landfill is always one of the most controversial land use decisions that a local government can face. Sunshine Canyon Landfill, located on the border where the City and County of Los Angeles meet, was certainly no exception. In 1991, following intense pressure from community groups, the 30-year old landfill was denied a renewal of a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) by the City of Los Angeles and was closed. Soon after, the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles County decided to sue each other over the issue. The landfill’s owner, BFI, hired Arnie Berghoff to negotiate settlement agreements between the City and County and to work to reopen the landfill. In large part due to his effort, the landfill reopened in 1995 on the portion located in the City of Los Angeles. The City became, and remains, the largest customer of the Sunshine Canyon Landfill. After starting arnie berghoff & associates in 1998, Arnie Berghoff began working to expand the landfill onto the County portion of the site. He was again successful, overcoming strong, local community opposition and the covert opposition of a major waste management competitor. Sunshine Canyon Landfill is recognized as one of the most successful and strategic lobbying efforts ever at the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles County.