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Benton residents to voice concerns over treated sewage dumped into Cypress Lake

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Residents on Cypress Lake concerned over treated sewage dumped in water. Residents on Cypress Lake concerned over treated sewage dumped in water.

Residents in Benton are speaking out about what they're calling an attack on our natural resources.

The Cypress Lake area has been Lucy Cooper's home for the last 18 years.

"It's a wonderful, wonderful area to live in, the fishing, the boating, skiing."

But Cooper says a proposed development, Woodhaven subdivision, is planning to dump its treated sewage into either Cypress Lake or Black Bayou Reservoir and residents aren't happy about it.

"This is an area that could slip through simply because we're not paying attention."

But the plans are still murky.

Parish Engineer Butch Ford says the subdivision's developer wasn't clear on exactly where he would discharge the gray water, something that will be discussed during a 7 p.m. meeting in the police jury room at the Bossier Parish Courthouse in Benton.

Woodhaven subdivision will be located at the intersection of Highway 162 and Angie Circle, right next to Cypress Lake.

However, Cooper is disappointed that local lawmakers have allowed the problem to progress this far.

"They have a responsibility to the citizens to protect this environment and this lake."

Eagle Water, Inc., out of Keithville, is the company that owns the sewer treatment facility, as well as all the lines in the subdivisions on Cypress Lake.

Keith Howard, with Eagle Water, Inc., says the sewage flows into a 3-cell oxidation pond and is aerated in a disinfection chamber before being discharged into the lake.

Howard says their water is tested regularly and the results are reported to the Dept. of Environment Quality. He also describes their water as being cleaner than what's in the lake itself.

Still, Cooper says the lake should be free of any sewage, treated or not.

"We are all citizens in favor of growth, but we want to do it in a way that's environmentally safe."

District 3 Police Jury Representative Wanda Bennett says all groups involved have been meeting frequently to work out a solution, and adds that residents should be pleased with the outcome of tonight's meeting.

An update of what's discussed in the meeting will be provided as soon as it's available.

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