Copiah County supervisors held a public hearing November 10 on the possibility of amending the county’s solid waste plan to permit operation of a privately owned Class 1 trash pit.
Billy Traxler who proposes to open the pit presented information about the operation and the need for it. He proposes to open the pit on property previously owned and mined for gravel by Blain Gravel Company accessed from Coor Springs Road. Traxler’s firm has 209 acres for possible future development, although the initial proposal is for only a five acre plot.
A class one pit is primarily for construction debris which presently must be hauled out of Copiah County. No household garbage or hazardous material will be allowed. Traxler proposes to bring in material permitted by the Department of Environmental Quality from outside the area and permit others to dump such material in his pit for a tipping fee. Recycling of the material would be a future goal of the operation.
Representatives of the City of Crystal Springs expressed interest in the proposal because they estimate that there is only a three year capacity remaining in the county pit on Highway 27 north of the city presently used for limbs. County officials observed that because of the cost of securing and operating pits, the county might be a future customer of Traxler.
A number of citizens made observations and asked questions about the operation primarily centering on noise, traffic, etc.
A petition containing 80 names was presented in opposition to the proposal. Traxler presented several endorsement letters for his position.
The next step is for the supervisors to decide whether they will amend the solid waste plan. If they do, the proposal will advance to the Department of Environmental Quality for examination at several levels before a permit can be issued.
During Thursday’s recessed board meeting, supervisors discussed the outcome of Monday’s public hearing but no action was taken.
Supervisor Perry Hood suggested that the board hold another meeting in which representatives from the DEQ can explain the monitoring and regulatory process concerning a Class 1 rubbish pit. He recognized the need for such a place in Copiah County and the seeming suitability of the site, but he stated he would like to have more information on the project before the board brings it to a vote.
“We should be asking as many questions as our citizens,” said Hood.
Various details, such as measures that will be taken to protect the groundwater, need to be explained in more detail to the public, supervisors agreed.
Supervisor Earl Dixon added, “We know we need it, but we need to be sure to go about it in the right way.”
In other business handled during Thursday’s recessed session, the board met with a potential new operator for the Copiah County Airport. The current operator gave notice on October 28 that he will be cancelling his lease. The board discussed several ideas for the promotion and future development of the airport, then referred the individual to the airport board for further discussion.
The revised version of the floodplain map was adopted. The board attorney is working on the new floodplain ordinance, which must be in effect by December 16. Existing houses will be grandfathered in under the new floodplain regulations.
Daryl McMillian was hired in the 911 addressing vacancy.
Kathy Miller was hired as part time dispatcher with the sheriff’s department.
The board accepted an order from Judge Patten to hire a court reporter and law clerk.
Payment of registration fees for the supervisors association midwinter conference was approved.
Payment of engineering and design fees on the Advance Lane improvements was authorized with grant funds to be drawn down to cover the cost.
The board authorized publication of the synopsis of the audit report for the past fiscal year.
The county will enter into an agreement to store materials from the Robert Johnson house move, pending the attorney’s approval of the lease details.
Supervisors recessed until Monday, November 24, at 9 a.m.