Westlake water now flows to Mossville - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Westlake water now flows to Mossville

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 Poor quality drinking water is one of the issues Mossville residents have brought up in talks about Sasol's proposed $21 billion expansion.

And today, on the eve of a zoning decision, officials have opened the valve sending Westlake water to Mossville.

Early this morning they flipped the switch-- causing water from the Westlake water system to flow to Mossville.   Police Juror Hal McMillin says it should mean better water quality for the people who stay in Mossville.

"Hopefully the clarity of water will be there.  We had complaints of brown water at one point in time.  Westlake water is being filtered through with a new system so clarity will be there and also we feel there will be more pressure.  So if we would happen to have any type of incident with a fire or anything we would have more water pressure coming to the Mossville area,"said McMillin.

Better water and paying off of the water district's debt is part of the deal Sasol offers as it seeks industrial zoning for nearly 1500 acres and the closure or abandonment of some public roads--seen in red on this map.  Officials say abandoning the roads will increase safety and security during development of the mega project.

 The zoning board did recommend Evergreen Drive stay open until Coach Williams Drive extension is complete in response to residents' concerns.

"This would restrict residents living on evergreen road to have only one route of ingress and egress immediately adjacent to the matheson Tri-Gas Plant," said Ronald Carrier at the Calcasieu Zoning Board meeting Tuesday night.

Coach Williams extension will provide north south route between old Spanish Trail and Houston River Road. Still some residents are not satisfied.

"Rezoning these sights to heavy industrial will subject residents to a declining quality of life," said Carrier.

 McMillin expects the police jury to follow the zoning board recommendation, when the jury meets at 5:30 PM Thursday night.

"I think we would all work together to get Coach Williams open as quickly as possible.  I'm very excited about that.  A $20 million project that will tie a straight shot from old Spanish trail extension there, so it'll be good," said McMillin.

So far, Sasol officials say they have made 354 buyout offers to residents--250 of which have been accepted.  At last word 64 households did not sign up.  Spokesman Mike Hayes says as of May 16 they had closed on 78 properties.  

Thursday night the Calcasieu Police Jury is expected to make a final decision on the Sasol zoning and road abandonments.  That meeting is at 5:30 at the Calcasieu government building.

For a link to the draft development agreement between Sasol and the Calcasieu police jury, click here.  To check out the zoning board agenda click here.  Look for the web extras featuring more of our interviews with Hal McMillin and Mike Hayes.

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