Loan sought to fund sewer system repairs

Published 4:50 pm Wednesday, April 17, 2019

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen are seeking to borrow $1.24 million through the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality’s Water Pollution Control Revolving Fund Loan Program for work on the city’s 111-year-old sewer system.

The Board Monday passed a resolution authorizing Mayor George Flaggs Jr. to sign the application agreements to get the money, which is the first draw of a $27.76 million loan that will be used over time to repair and upgrade the city’s sewer system.

Edwin Dedeaux with Jackson-based Allen Hoshall, the project engineer for the sewer system work, said the city is required under the loan regulations to apply each year for the loan.

“The state is only going to loan the amount of money needed for the work in a particular year,” he said.

The board in May 2018, applied to get on the state’s priority list for the money to meet the requirements of an Environmental Protection Agency consent decree requiring the city to assess, map, repair, replace and upgrade its aging sewer system after tests determined raw sewage was allowed to flow into local streams and the Mississippi River.

The EPA in March lifted the consent decree, but the city is still required to continue its work on the sewer system.

In another matter, the board authorized PPM Consultants to perform a phase 1 environmental assessment of the former U.S. Rubber Reclaiming, Inc., 2000 Rubber Way.

The property is located on the west side of U.S. 61 South across from an express oil business. The building was destroyed by a fire in 2006.

The property was later purchased by a local developer for potential development, but was later sold for back taxes.

The state of Mississippi acquired the property when no one claimed it during the county tax sale. The assessment will determine what environmental hazards are on the property.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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