Scotlandville sewer fight isn't over yet, say residents

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POSTED: Wednesday, December 26, 2012 - 7:28pm

UPDATED: Thursday, December 27, 2012 - 2:15pm

For Irma Miller, almost two decades have gone by since the East Baton Rouge Parish expanded its Scotlandville sewage treatment plant just yards from her home. In those years she says the quality of life has become unbearable.

"We get in the house, the door shut tight, the windows are shut tight and that's about it. That's the extent of the time I spend in my home," Miller explained.

For years residents such as Miller and her neighbors have fought to have the city-parish buy them out of their homes and help them relocate away from the stench, flies and chemicals they say is put off by the plant. Despite having the issue voted down by the metro council, it's now come up for hearing again on the agenda in January.

"We can just hope in this next voting that we're going to see something positive come out of all this fighting," Miller said.

This time around the matter will be in front of a new crop of council members, many of whom say they're not in favor of the buyout.

"I don't see where buying this property serves a vital public interest for the city of Baton Rouge. That being the case, if we go ahead and buy this property, that then opens the door for litigation against the city from each of these homeowners," John Delgado, incoming councilman for district 12, explained.

Residents said no matter what the outcome on the next vote though, they're going to continue fighting.

"You almost at the point where you just want to throw in the towel and give up. but we know it's been a long battle, we know that it is the right thing to do. And when you're fighting for the right thing, I guess time is no barrier," Miller added.

The council will hear the item again on January 9, 2013.

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