Treated sewage dumped in Benton lakes draws crowd at meeting - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Treated sewage dumped in Benton lakes draws crowd at Planning Commission Meeting

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BENTON, LA (KSLA) -

The Benton planning commission had an unusually large audience on Tuesday night. More than one hundred concerned citizens showed up to protest treated waste water being dumped into both Black Bayou and Cypress Lakes.

So many people wanted to attend the planning commission meeting that the commission had to move the meeting from the Benton Town Hall to the Bossier Parish Courthouse.

The hot topic of the night was the vote for final approval of the 19-acre Woodhaven Subdivision. The developer of that subdivision was originally considering using the Black Bayou or Cypress Lakes to dump their treated sewage into.

Lucy Cooper lives on the lake and is against that method, "These new subdivisions that want to dump their treated gray water into our lake, we strongly disagree with that," said Cooper.

At the meeting, resident after resident went up to the podium and expressed similar concerns to the commission. "The mere presence of all the residents, citizens, is evidence this is a hot button issue, they are very interested and would like to see it resolved," said Cooper.

Bossier Parish Engineer Butch Ford offered a possible resolution. Ford explained to the crowd that he is trying to work with neighborhood developers and the police jury to find ways to extend the Benton sewer system, to avoid waste water from going into the lakes.

Ultimately after much discussion, the planning commission chose to approve the subdivision, but with a contingency. The commission voted to give their stamp of approval on the subdivision, but only if they found a way to have their sewage go through Benton sewage pipes and not into the lakes.

Cooper calls it a victory, but not all residents are convinced. "I am disappointed that they approved it," said concerned Benton resident William Hearne.

The planning commission's recommendation will go before the police jury at their next meeting in October.

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