ST. CLOUD -- A fundamental change in the way we discard our garbage will likely mean a one-time windfall for Stearns, Benton and Sherburne counties.

The Tri-County Solid Waste Commission is considering two offers to buy land set aside years ago for a future landfill. The commission bought 120 acres of land east of Foley in 1989. Now, Commission spokesman Doug Lien says half of what we throw away is being recycled and another 25% is being burned for energy...making landfills less desirable.

The land was bought for just under $110,000 in 1989 and is appraised at about $260,000. Lien says when the land is sold, the money will go back to the three counties based on the percentage each county paid to buy the property.