Work Begins On Ocean Beach Estates' Sewer System

The sights and sounds of rebuilding have filled the Ocean Beach Estates community for months now. Tuesday, a new noise made its debut.

Jackson County is breaking ground on the new $1.5 million sewer system.

"It's going to be nice, it's really going to be nice," resident Linda Fudge says.

Fudge has lived in the area since 1998 and since then has made sacrifices because her septic tank never worked right.

"It got to the point where you could not do laundry, shower, and run your dishwasher all in the same day. So you had to make a choice. Do you want to have dirty dishes, dirty body, or dirty clothes?"

Lance Bowlin's had a few issues with his tank as well. It, not Katrina, completely deformed his backyard.

"You can see now where it used to sit level with the ground. Now it's about two feet high," Bowlin says.

"Because this ground does not percolate and it's such a flat area, nothing drains well. Well, none of the septic systems work. What you have is raw sewage in the ditches, in people's yards because it all comes to the surface rather than seeping to the ground," Supervisor John McKay says.

McKay says these new pipes should soon put the inconveniences, nasty odors, and environmental problems to bed for at least 10 percent of the homes in Ocean Beach Estates.

"It's only a small step, but it's a first step in alleviating this environmental problem," McKay says.

The rest of the homes will have to wait until the county secures another half million dollars to lay the rest of the lines.

Bowlin just hopes he's not one of them.

"We're right on the border line of where the money might run out. So hopefully the county will find so more money," Bowlin says.

Supervisor McKay says the county is working on getting the rest of the funding for the project. He says once the system is complete, the building moratorium for the area should be lifted.