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Marysville residents are planning to sue Cedar Grove Composting, alleging the company is to blame for foul smells wafting through town. (AP image)

Marysville residents to sue over Cedar Grove compost stink

Marysville residents say after a two year fight, they're going to sue over a foul odor they claim comes from a nearby Cedar Grove Composting plant on the outskirts of town.

"It's near the point where it actually burns your eyes and nose. It's a nuisance," said Byron Muck, who lives about two miles from the plant.

Muck spoke with KIRO Radio's Ross and Burbank Monday about the ongoing battle with Cedar Grove, which has vehemently denied being the source of the smell since neighbors and city officials started complaining.

"They have aggressively pointed the finger in other directions," Muck says. The company has repeatedly suggested the odor comes from either a nearby tree bark processing plant, or Marysville's sewage-treatment plant. But Muck says the claims don't pass the the smell test.

"They're all distinct odors, but none of these are what we are smelling," Muck says.

The fight has escalated since the Mucks and other neighbors presented Marysville Mayor Jon Nehring with 1,300 signatures in 2010 demanding the city help fight Cedar Grove.

The city hired a law firm and public relations agency to help with the battle, while Cedar Grove hired its own Seattle public relations firm, The Seattle Times reported.

Now, Cedar Grove is suing the city for allegedly withholding public records, neighbors are planning to sue and another attorney is collecting names to possibly file a class-action suit.

Muck just wants to use his backyard on a nice summer day without holding his nose.

"During the summer months, I invite anyone to come out and I'll take them right out here on our deck. They can be witness to the smell that we put up with."

While the company has offered to help pay for an independent study to ultimately determine the cause, Muck is dubious. And with all of the animosity in the air, it's unlikely the matter will be cleared any time soon.

Josh Kerns, MyNorthwest.com Reporter
Josh Kerns is an award winning reporter/anchor and host of KIRO Radio's Seattle Sounds (Sunday afternoons 5-6p) and a digital content producer for MyNorthwest.com.
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