Agreement reached in Sikeston waste dispute

Thursday, June 28, 2007

SIKESTON, Mo. -- The Sikeston industrial park will not be forced to stop discharging its wastewater into a ditch operated by the Richland Drainage District when its contract expires Saturday, lawyers for the Sikeston Board of Municipal Utilities (SBMU) and the drainage district said Thursday.

An agreement between the two parties was reached earlier this week that will allow facilities in the industrial park to continue discharges wastewater under the current contract specifications, said SBMU attorney Jim Robison of Sikeston.

The current contract allows up to an average of 400,000 gallons per day of treated wastewater to be discharged into one of the drainage district's ditches near Sikeston.

Robison filed suit earlier this month against the drainage district hoping the Scott County courts can remedy the contract dispute. SBMU is seeking more volume of wastewater discharge, citing expansion of industry in the industrial park. The drainage district maintains its ditches have reached capacity in regards to that discharge.

The two entities will operate under the terms of the old agreement -- the same terms sought for renewal by the drainage district -- until the matter is resolved in court, a process which could take months.

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