Hinds County Supervisors look at how they could help alleviate Jackson’s garbage crisis

Published: Apr. 17, 2023 at 6:30 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Hinds County Supervisors are looking into how they can help you keep your trash from piling up in Jackson if the 12-month emergency contract doesn’t go into effect after Tuesday’s vote.

Right now, Hinds County Supervisors say they are seeing trash pile up in their districts, and if the city doesn’t sign the emergency contract tomorrow, it will get worse.

During a Hinds County Board meeting Monday, several Hinds County Supervisors stated that if the county declares a health emergency, they would be able to vote on a temporary garbage contract for the city of Jackson, leaving the temporary debate out of the hands of city officials.

Supervisors got into a heated debate during a board meeting over declaring an emergency in the first place.

Supervisor David Archie accused Supervisors Vern Gavin and Credell Calhoun of trying to pick one company over the other without a unanimous vote.

“Had we declared the emergency, the next step was to pick the contractor. You only need three votes to pick the contractor. So they can pick the contractor that they wanted. But I’m telling you, moving forward with those details must be worked out before we even attempt to declare an emergency,” Archie explained.

However, Gavin claims he isn’t in the business of picking one group over the other. He only wants to see a temporary solution in place.

”I don’t want to get into the politics, if you will, of what’s taking place over at the city. But what we do want to do is offer some relief. As for choosing a vendor, we did not have a vendor in mind. Nor do I think supervisor Calhoun, who brought up the motion, had a vendor in mind,” Gavin said.

Shortly after the meeting, the city agreed to a 12-month emergency contract with Richards, and the vote will be held Tuesday. If the city doesn’t vote in favor, the County could declare an emergency, pick a vendor, and the city would still foot the bill on the temporary contract.

Supervisor Robert Graham says the discussions today could help in the future if the situation was to pile up again.

”The Board of Supervisors was ready to step in under our emergency powers to make sure that something happened. We’re waiting for an opinion from the Attorney General as to what the county’s authority would be under an emergency situation like this. I’m glad we really don’t need it at this particular point in time. But at the same time, it’s good to have,” Graham explained.

The Supervisors contacted the Attorney General’s office Monday morning and will be using the response to guide them in the future if a similar crisis was to happen again.

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