City of Byram offers $5 million to City of Jackson for “good pipes” in city limit

Published: Mar. 14, 2023 at 8:20 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The City of Byram is making another big attempt to get its own water system. This time, it involves an agreement with the City of Jackson.

As of Tuesday, Mayor Richard White said his city has 25 leaks that haven’t been addressed despite Interim Third Party manager Ted Henefin taking control of Jackson’s water.

“I got one guy that messes was water every day of the week, and it’s not right. We don’t have to do that with Entergy. We don’t have to do with Atmos gas,” Mayor White explained. “But I’ve reached out to him on a couple [of] occasions, and he said I don’t have anybody available right now. Soon as he got Jackson straight. When is that gonna be?”

“I challenge them to come and look in Jackson because we’re not getting fixed very fast in Jackson either. We’re not prioritizing Jackson’s leaks over Byram. We’re struggling right now to get the equipment and the contractors in place,” Henefin said.

It’s no secret the City of Byram has been working to get off Jackson’s Water system for almost a year now but Mayor White is now taking the biggest step to date.

In a letter sent to Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba, Byram is offering $5 million for some of the pipes in their city limit.

“We’re offering to buy the pipes that are good in the ground because somebody’s got to replace them, and that’s us,” Mayor White said.

If the city accepts the offer, “We’ll probably put in at least three wells, three pumps, similar to what they did on the fairgrounds, and we’ll put in one tank which we’ve already got some prices on, and then we’ll start taking us off their water system and providing our own water,” White said.

So who has the ability to agree to offer? Ted Henefin said it’s not up to him.

“I can’t sell, give away, do anything with any of the assets, you know. I’m supposed to just operate, maintain and find more money and keep fixing things.”

According to the city of Jackson, Mayor Lumumba has seen the letter from Mayor White; however, he has no comment at this time.

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