Tom Johnson says his nose has gotten use to the smell.
Johnson delivers this piece of information as he circumnavigates a 60-foot mound of compacted refuse at the local Browning-Ferris Industries landfill, which, in certain areas, carries a distinctive stench.
He doesn't wince once.
It's the reward of a career spent in landfills, the occupation Johnson has practiced most of his working life, and the business, he says, this county can't do without.
"We feel that we are needed in this community," says Johnson, general manager of the local landfill.
Others would disagree, contending BFI could take its operations elsewhere and Franklin County doesn't have to be the hub for Central Kentucky's trash disposal.
As a zone change request proposed by BFI returns to the Frankfort-Franklin County Planning Commission on Thursday for a decision that would likely pave the way for an expansion of the local landfill, protests aren't expected to subside.