Action Report: Harrison County residents concerned about plans for a natural gas project

Published: Jan. 14, 2016 at 5:02 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 15, 2016 at 10:54 AM CST
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HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - CenterPoint Energy has plans to construct a natural gas regulator station in a Harrison County neighborhood, but people living in the area aren't happy with the proposed project.

Residents say they received a letter from the gas company notifying them of plans to build the regulator station to provide additional natural gas to the Chemours Plant; formerly the DuPont Plant.

CenterPoint Energy is purchasing the property zoned residential off Edwin Ladner Road from Tri-States. According to the permit application, the sale is contingent on CenterPoint Energy receiving a conditional use permit from Harrison County to build a natural gas regulator station.

Chad Malone, Rhonda Pearce and other homeowners say they want CenterPoint Energy to choose another location because two smaller natural gas regulator stations are already at the proposed site. The existing stations were built years ago, across from the proposed new site and across the street from Malone's home.

Malone said, "It gets old when you walk out your door and that's what you're going to see. It's a 150 feet from my home. You know you've got it in front of your house and you smell it; it stinks. It pops off all day, all night. You've got people in and out, but most of all it's the inconvenience of having it sit next door to your house."

The conditional use permit application outlines guidelines that state development of the land should be in harmony with the scale, bulk, coverage, density, and character of the area or neighborhood in which it is located.

Pictures from CenterPoint's permit application show what the company proposes building next to Malone's home.

"It's four times as big as the other ones, "stated Rhonda Pearce. "So when I go outside to my backyard, I'm going to see the sub-station. It's going to devalue my property which I have worked all my life to pay for it. So I don't think anybody would want to live next to it."

Harrison County Director of Zoning, Pat Bonck says residents in the area can voice their concerns later in January.

"The upcoming Planning Commission meeting will be held at the Harrison County Courthouse in Gulfport on Jan. 21 at 5:00 p.m.," said Bonck.

Pearce added, "I do not have the money for an attorney. So, we are little people, but the big people are like Piranhas. They want to eat the small people."

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