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Damaged pole, lines must be replaced at Ceres

[02/20/01] The Warren County Port Commission will try to recover the cost of replacing a power pole and lines damaged by a dump truck owned by a subcontractor working on the new Mississippi National Guard center for Warren County.

At Monday’s meeting of the commission, Executive Director Jimmy Heidel and Assistant Director Linda Watts reported a dump truck snagged a cable and ended up pulling down a concrete power pole and phone and power lines at the Ceres Research and Industrial Interplex on Jan. 23.

The damage to the power line caused a power outage at the industrial park that shut down the sewage treatment lagoon. When power went out at one of the lift stations, the emergency pump tried to start and burned out a starter on the diesel engine.

“The good thing was they got the power back on just before Tyson (Foods chicken processing plant) had to shut down,” Watts said.

She told the commission members Entergy Mississippi repaired the pole. Watts and Heidel got contractors out to repair the pump and other problems.

The total cost of the repair work the commission had to do was about $1,700, and the board approved the actions taken by Watts and Heidel.

At the same time, the board ordered that a letter be sent to the Mississippi National Guard along with a bill for what the repairs cost since the damage was done by a subcontractor working for Bernard & Son of Mendenhall, the general contractor for the Guard building.

The board also heard a report from its attorney, J. Mack Varner, who had been instructed to write a letter to Bernard at the January meeting about road damage done by a subcontractor hauling dirt for the Guard building’s foundation.

The board noted that no one has made any repairs to the damaged roads as called for in agreements with the commission and the Guard.

“They are on notice now” that the work will be required, Varner said.

The five-member port commission, composed of appointees, manages Ceres at Flowers, the E.W. Haining Industrial Center at the Vicksburg Harbor and other industrial sites.

In other action, commissioners:

Approved a $600 expenditure for aerial photos of Ceres for a project to produce computerized maps of the industrial center showing all utilities and other features.

Heard a report from Heidel on the progress of trying to modify the permit for the sewage lagoon to increase its capacity from 500,000 gallons per day to 1.5 million gallons per day. Heidel said the change in the permit will require activation of a fourth treatment cell at a cost of about $250,000. He also said the commission will be eligible to apply for a community development block grant in April to help pay for the work.

The board authorized Heidel to begin the steps to submit the application.