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MDEQ reissues discharge permit for Kemper plant

State officials are affirming a permit that allows Mississippi Power Co.’s Kemper County power plant to discharge water into a creek during high rainfall.

The Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality’s Permit Board voted unanimously Tuesday to reissue the permit with minor changes in how on-site sewage is treated and monitored.

The vote comes after a Meridian man challenging the permit since 2014, Austin “Dan” Check, refused to participate. Check said that Leyser Hayes, the Jackson lawyer who presided as a hearing officer, was biased because she formerly served as an assistant attorney general, and because Check has been involved in legal controversies against the attorney general’s office.

The water in the holding pond, including treated wastewater piped from Meridian, is used to generate steam to turn electricity-generating turbines. Mississippi Power’s customers are paying for the pipeline, part of $4.2 billion they could pay for the $6.9 billion plant.

 

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