"I have grandchildren and children who live in the Tooele Valley. There is no way on this Earth or the life to come I would expose my children, grandchildren to something that may be harmful or toxic to them," Sagers said. "There is nothing in the world that would make me do that."
Lawmakers also noted that should Stericycle purchase school trust lands property and build its new plant in Tooele County, it will have to be built to the latest regulatory standards, which are more stringent than what they operate under now.
Company spokeswoman Selin Hoboy said the plant will have $1.5 million in upgrades installed at its North Salt Lake location by October to meet federal regulations adopted in 2009 that become effective this year.
That upgrade, Hoboy added, will result in a reduction of six pollutants by 90 percent — reductions that will be shaved even further with the new plant in Tooele County.
The company is in the midst of negotiations with the Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration to purchase about 40 acres of property for a plant that would be located 11 miles from the nearest neighborhood.
The company, which operates at some level in 47 states, has not been chased out of any community, contrary to critics' claims, Hoboy said.
"We've actually lived pretty peacefully with (North Salt Lake) over the years," she said.
Stericycle accepts waste from eight states, including Utah, but the waste is flowing back and forth, Hoboy said. The company collects waste from any of its 700 pickup locations throughout Utah, but items that can be safely disposed of in a landfill through a super-heating process end up going out of state, while waste that has to be incinerated stays in the state or is conveyed to Utah via truck.
That waste includes trace chemotherapy, nonhazardous pharmaceuticals and pathological waste that can only be rendered chemically neutral through incineration, she said.
The resolution nows goes to the Utah Senate for consideration.
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