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      Residents sue state landfill over odor

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- A neighbor has sued the operator of the largest landfill in South Carolina, complaining the odor from the garbage is sickening and is hurting property values.

      The State newspaper reported Wednesday the class action lawsuit was filed earlier this summer by Perrin Babb against the Republic Services, which operates the landfill just outside Bishopville, about 50 miles east of Columbia on Interstate 20.

      The lawsuit seeks damages for those near the landfill.

      Republic spokeswoman Peg Mulloy says the company is fighting the lawsuit, but would not talk about it.

      Thom Berry with the Department of Health and Environmental Control says Republic has expanded a gas extraction system to help with odors and has added misters to limit the smell. He says the company is also putting thicker cover on top of the trash.

      (Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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