Summary of Meeting Held August 27, 2020
The Mississippi Commission on Environmental Quality (“MCEQ”) convened at 9:00 a.m. on August 27, 2020. This meeting was held through a telephone conference call. The public was invited to listen to the deliberations of the Commission on the conference phone line. The Commission first approved minutes from the previous meeting held on June 25, 2020, 2020. Then, following a prepared agenda, the Commission considered items as follows:
Election of Officers for Fiscal Year 2021 (July 2020-June 2021)
The Commission re-elected the John Dane, III as Chair and Brenda Lathan as Vice-Chair.
Commission Approval of Brownfield Agreement
The MCEQ Staff recommended and the Commission approved the Brownfield Agreement between the Commission and Castle Starkville, LLC regarding the remediation of brownfield property located at 601 Highway 12 in Starkville, Mississippi. The administrative record for this environmental response project is referred to as the former Garan Manufacturing site. The proposed Brownfield Agreement Site previously operated as a clothing manufacturer and distributor. Site assessments identified the presence of asbestos containing materials. Therefore, remediation of the proposed Brownfield Agreement Site is necessary. The proposed use of the Site after completion of all remediation will be a 90,000 square foot commercial redevelopment for retail space. Commission Staff evaluated the Brownfield Agreement and believes that, with the conditions and restrictions contained within the Brownfield Agreement, the Site will be in compliance with applicable State and Federal laws and standards and will be protective of the public health and the environment. The MCEQ Staff received one inquiry during the public comment period, but no objections.
Commission Approval of Brownfield Consulting Firm
The MCEQ Staff reviewed an application from a consulting firm requesting to be listed as a Brownfield Consulting Firm and has determined it to be complete and acceptable. Staff recommended and the Commission approved the following firm as Brownfield Consulting Firm:
11628 S. Choctaw Drive
Baton Rouge, LA 70815
Showcase of 2020 Municipal Excellence Award Winner – City of Hernando – Reliable Equipment Brownfield Redevelopment Project
In July 2020, the City of Hernando received the Mississippi Municipal League’s 2020 Municipal Excellence Award for Planning and Economic Development, Population Over 10,000 for the public-private partnership with City of Hernando, the Mississippi Development Authority, the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality, and Hernando Town Properties, LLC for the redevelopment of the former Reliable Equipment farm equipment maintenance facility into Uncle Bubba’s Barbecue and Social x Saint, upscale shop. Through a Brownfield Community Wide Grant by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to the City of Hernando, Brownfield Agreements between MDEQ and Hernando Town Properties, LLC, and a redevelopment tax incentive between MDA and Hernando Town Properties, LLC this public-private partnership was possible. The Commission on Environmental Quality’s participation by (1) the approval of the original Brownfield Agreement application, (2) the approval of the Brownfield Corrective Action Plan, (3) the approval of the modified Brownfield Corrective Action Plan, and (4) the approval of the completion of the original Brownfield Agreement not only allowed the clean-up of petroleum contaminated soil and petroleum/lead contaminated groundwater, but also provided Hernando Town Properties, LLC the opportunity to receive tax incentives and credits from MDA to make this redevelopment possible. The Commission’s actions also allowed for reuse of the building which minimized waste disposal activities. This agenda item was for reporting purposes only and required no action by the Commission.
Water Pollution Control Revolving Loan Fund (WPCRLF) Program, Adoption of FY-2020 Intended Use Plan
The Staff recommended adoption and the Commission approved the FY-2020 Intended Use Plan. This document identifies the loan funds available to communities for the construction of wastewater infrastructure, the communities to receive these loan funds, the loan interest rate, program deadlines, and other related information. Public comments on the draft Intended Use Plan have been solicited through a public comment period and a public hearing.
Water Pollution Control Revolving Loan Fund (WPCRLF) Program, Resolution of Necessity to Issue Bonds
During the 2020 State legislative session, House Bill 1730 was passed and subsequently became law. This bill provided for the issuance of $2,830,000 in bonds to provide state matching funds required to obtain $14,150,000 in available federal assistance to this program. The funds are loaned at low interest rates to facilitate the construction or improvement of Wastewater Treatment facilities in the state. In order to initiate this process, the Commission must adopt a Resolution of Necessity for issuance of these bonds. Staff will provide copies of the Resolution to the Commission for consideration. Staff also recommend and the Commission adopted the Resolution of Necessity to Issue the Bonds.
2020 Draft Mississippi Section 303(d) List of Impaired Water Bodies
The Staff briefed the Commission on the 2020 Draft Mississippi Section 303(d) List of Impaired Water Bodies. The Commission has been provided with the document package which includes the 2020 DRAFT Mississippi 303(d) List, a copy of the public notice and the MDEQ CALM document. A public notice is scheduled to be held on September 28, 2020 to receive public comments. Staff will return to the Commission following the public notice and hearing to request the adoption of the Final 2020 303(d) list.
Asbestos: 227 certifications
Lead Paint: 109 certifications
Storage Tanks: 7 certifications
Wastewater Operator: 64
EMERGENCY CLEAN-UP EXPENSES
There were 7 emergency expenditures since the last report.
ADMINISTRATIVE ORDERS APPROVED
Twenty one (13) Administrative Orders and three (3) Amended Agreed Orders were issued by the Executive Director and approved by the Commission since the last report.
The next Commission meeting is proposed to be on September 24, 2018, at 9 a.m.
This Newsletter is a publication of the Environmental Department of the law firm of Brunini, Grantham, Grower & Hewes located in Jackson, Mississippi. This Newsletter is not designed or intended to provide legal or professional advice, as any such advice requires the consideration of the facts of the specific situation.
If you have any questions concerning the content of a newsletter, or if you would like further information about the matters addressed in a newsletter, please contact John Milner, the Brunini Firm Environmental Practice Group leader, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (601) 960-6842.