The City of Ridgeland is withdrawing from the Madison County Wastewater Authority, Mayor Gene F. McGee confirmed last week. 

MCWA was founded in 2003 and is composed of several organizations including the Bear Creek Water Association, Canton Municipal Utilities, Pearl River Valley Water Supply District, Lake Lorman Utility District, Madison County, the West Madison County Utility District, Madison the City and Ridgeland.

McGee, a leader is helping to get MCWA organized in the beginning, said at that time he thought the city would eventually send its sewer to the Beattie’s Bluff Wastewater Treatment Plant built by MCWA.

“We didn’t know what was going to happen with Jackson,” McGee said. 

Currently, Ridgeland sends its sewer to Jackson.

McGee said due to the fact the city would never use the facility it was time to withdraw. 

He added that current lawsuits involving MCWA could potentially cause liability for the city and that’s not something Ridgeland residents should be faced with. 

CMU filed a lawsuit in April for more than $5 million and full ownership of Beattie’s Bluff in a counterclaim to a lawsuit filed by MCWA against CMU seeking $2.2 million in depreciation costs the organization says was wrongfully charged.

“With all that’s going on, there’s a chance of us having to pay money we don’t need to be paying,” he said. “We have never (used Beattie’s Bluff) and we never will. That’s the deal.”

He said the city currently pays an administrative cost every month to the tune of around $50,000 per year for MCWA and the city is signed onto four bank notes.

McGee said with the recent development of a wastewater treatment plant in Rankin County, that will free up Jackson’s capabilities, making the current service even better.

Madison Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler, the current vice chairman of MCWA, was unavailable for comment. 

Currently, CMU utilizes Beattie’s Bluff the most, with 44 percent of the flow in 2018. Bear Creek is second with 32 percent of the flow. Madison has 21 percent of the flow and Pearl River Valley has 2 percent of the flow.