HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - After a special-called meeting by the Hattiesburg City Council, it is back to the drawing board for a land application system.
The council passed three motions, including to withdraw plans to locate a land application system in Lamar County.
The council met with attorneys and engineers for more than an hour in executive session Thursday evening.
"We are withdrawing our requests of Mr. Turner, Watkins and Eager to pursue eminent domain no property in Lamar County," City Council President Kim Bradley said. "We questioned the ordinance that they passed and the legality of their ordinance, obviously we asked them to withdraw our requests to pursue that."
Bradley said, "Our project, our land app project will not be in Lamar County. I think it's a shame because it's a great thing, I believe it would help the area that we were in, but there has been so much negative that has been said about the land app system, and untruths, non-truths and I think that killed the idea."
Bradley added that the city does not have roughly two or more years to tie the matter up in court with Lamar County.
"We are under a federal order; we have to come up with a new treatment system, one that will meet the current requirements that have been implemented in our use permit," Bradley said.
According to the motion filed:
Bradley said the council and engineers will now focus their efforts on obtaining land in Forrest County, on and near Camp Shelby or south of Hattiesburg.
"We have identified some properties in Forrest County that meet the criteria and would have the capacity for the wastewater, to be able to handle the million gallons of fluid that we would be spraying," Bradley said.
Another motion passed in the meeting was for the city to authorize the attorneys to negotiate contracts and agreements for the construction and completion of the city's planned land application wastewater treatment system.
"We are going to have to go back and redesign the system, because its different, it's in a different situation and place," Bradley said.
The third motion passed allows engineers to design a new land application wastewater treatment system for the new area of land the city is eyeing.
Bradley added that the land application system will not be able to be completed for less than $110 million.
"To meet the EPA and the requirements they are putting on us is not going to happen for less than $110 million, there is no other process out there," Bradley said.