Mississippi city with water woes also faces trash trouble

Oct 6, 2022, 3:49 PM | Updated: 4:11 pm

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi’s capital city is still grappling with a troubled water system, and it could soon see garbage piling up outside homes and businesses.

Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba announced Thursday garbage collection will cease after Saturday unless the city starts paying a company that has been doing the work without compensation since April.

Lumumba and the Jackson City Council have been feuding for several months over the garbage contract for the city of 150,000 residents.

The trash clash continued even as most of Jackson lost running water for several days in late August and early September because torrential rainfall exacerbated problems with the city’s main water treatment plant. For seven weeks from late July to mid-September, people in Jackson were also told to boil water to kill contaminants because the state health department found cloudy water that could make people ill.

Crews are still making emergency repairs to the water plant, and questions remain about the quality of water in the city where 80% of residents are Black and a quarter live in poverty.

The city council voted multiple times against awarding the garbage collection contract to a New Orleans-based company, Richard’s Disposal. The mayor said the company had submitted the lowest and best bid. City council members said they thought the company that previously had Jackson’s garbage contract, Houston-based Waste Management Inc., had a better bid.

Early this year, Lumumba issued an emergency order to award a garbage collection contract to Richard’s Disposal.

The mayor and the council have been arguing in state court over whether the mayor has the power to veto the council’s rejection of his choice for a garbage collection company. That dispute awaits consideration at the Mississippi Supreme Court.

Richard’s Disposal is still pursuing a federal lawsuit that seeks to force the city to pay for the garbage collection services the company has provided. It originally filed the lawsuit in July.

The company filed papers Wednesday asking a federal judge to rule in its favor. Attorneys said the company “has continued to provide solid waste collection services in good faith.”

News outlets reported the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality could fine the city $25,000 a day if residential garbage pickup stops.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


FILE - A bottle of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey is displayed next to a Bad Spaniels dog toy in A...

Associated Press

Ruff day in court: Supreme Court sides with Jack Daniel’s in dispute with makers of dog toy

The Supreme Court on Thursday gave whiskey maker Jack Daniel's reason to raise a glass, handing the company a new chance to win a trademark dispute with the makers of the Bad Spaniels dog toy.

22 hours ago

(Pixabay Photo)...

Associated Press

6 arrested in alleged scheme to fraudulently collect millions in COVID aid meant for renters

Six people from Washington, Arizona and Texas have been arrested and accused of fraudulently obtaining millions of dollars of COVID-19 aid from an assistance program meant for renters, federal prosecutors said.

22 hours ago

FILE - Protesters stand outside of the Senate chamber at the Indiana Statehouse on Feb. 22, 2023, i...

Associated Press

LGBTQ+ Americans are under attack, Human Rights Campaign declares in state of emergency warning

The Human Rights Campaign declared a state of emergency for LGBTQ+ people in the U.S. on Tuesday.

3 days ago

FILE - People wait in line outside the Supreme Court in Washington to listen to oral arguments in a...

Associated Press

Supreme Court opened the door to states’ voting restrictions. Now a new ruling could widen them.

Within hours of a U.S. Supreme Court decision dismantling a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, Texas lawmakers announced plans to implement a strict voter ID law that had been blocked by a federal court. Lawmakers in Alabama said they would press forward with a similar law that had been on hold.

3 days ago

Gavel (Pexels Photo)...

Associated Press

Ex-teacher sentenced to prison for making death threat against Arizona legislator

A former Tucson middle school teacher was sentenced Tuesday to 2 ½ years in prison after pleading guilty to making a death threat against Arizona state Sen. Wendy Rogers.

3 days ago

FILE - Police officers stand outside a Target store as a group of people protest across the street,...

Associated Press

Pride becomes a minefield for big companies, but many continue their support

Many big companies, including Target and Bud Light's parent, are still backing Pride events in June despite the minefield that the monthlong celebration has become for some of them.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles



Here are the biggest tips to keep your AC bill low this summer

PHOENIX — In Arizona during the summer, having a working air conditioning unit is not just a pleasure, but a necessity. No one wants to walk from their sweltering car just to continue to be hot in their home. As the triple digits hit around the Valley and are here to stay, your AC bill […]



Thank you to Al McCoy for 51 years as voice of the Phoenix Suns

Sanderson Ford wants to share its thanks to Al McCoy for the impact he made in the Valley for more than a half-decade.


OCD & Anxiety Treatment Center

How to identify the symptoms of 3 common anxiety disorders

Living with an anxiety disorder can be debilitating and cause significant stress for those who suffer from the condition.

Mississippi city with water woes also faces trash trouble