Residents continue to voice concerns over landfill sale  

By Paige Nash

Many residents are still in an uproar over the sale of the Webster Parish Landfill to Republic Services. Terry Davis, a resident of the village of Dixie Inn, attended the Webster Parish Police Jury meeting Tuesday and spoke on behalf of a lot of her fellow neighbors.  

“I want to know why the people were not informed properly,” Davis said. “To sell the landfill and not have the people involved, I think that’s wrong.” 

She wanted to know where the tax money is going now that the parish no longer owns the landfill and who has the right to make these decisions without asking the people first.  

She is referring to the half-cent sales tax that was adopted in 1984. Many residents have had the same question and were under the impression that this special tax was put in place strictly for the maintenance and upkeep of the landfill, but the ordinance states that it can be used for the purpose of many other things, including constructing, maintaining and improving public roads, streets, highways, and bridges. It can also be used for the construction and renovations of the jail and penal farm facilities. 

“We are still paying taxes and then we didn’t get any notice. The people need to know,” said Davis. “There should have been something in the mailbox for all of the people to know, so they could come up here and have a voice. You all are acting like a tyrannical government.” 

WPPJ President, Jim Bonsall addressed Davis’ questions. “When this meeting is over with, I will talk to you. I don’t know why they wouldn’t be informed. We worked on this for over two years.” 

Residents that live in rural areas like Davis may not have access to the internet or subscribe to a newspaper, so they would not have had any other way to know about the sale or have access to a list with the new pricing required now that Republic has taken over ownership. 

 “A lot of people didn’t know.” said Davis. “You send flyers when you want to get re-elected. You go door to door. You should have had something in the mail for all of Webster Parish.” 

Another resident added to the subject. “I am handicapped, and my husband is also. It’s more costly to us to have to make other arrangements, so I am discouraged too, that I was not aware of it.” 

A resident of the City of Minden expressed her concern over people dumping on unoccupied property and taking their trash to non-public bins around town. This has become a problem since they are now required to pay at the landfill and said she knows personally about this happening.  

Police Juror Bernard Hudson of District #5 closed out the discussion by saying, “The landfill is a problem. That’s all I’ve got to say about it.” 

The subjects of pricing and dumping have been an ongoing concern for many residents, and even jurors since the initial discussion came up about selling the landfill. It is unclear at this time what actions will be taken to handle these issues.  

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