Southern Aggregates waits final decision on Louisiana gravel pit

The battle over Southern Aggregates’ proposed gravel pit in Livingston Parish continues as Watson residents plead with Louisiana’s Department of Environmental Quality to deny a permit to the company.

A piece of land boarding the Oak Hill subdivision in Watson has been the source of a fierce fight that’s played out in community meetings and public hearings for the past year and a half.

Southern Aggregates looks to build a gravel pit on that property. However, the families who live nearby have opposed the plan from the beginning, fearing the operation’s impact on their health, environment and quality of life.

The latest meeting between residents and Southern Aggregates’ general manager Kevin Black was to discuss a minor source air permit application filed with the DEQ. Air quality is a particular concern for neighbors who worry the gravel pit will generate unbearable amounts of dust and sediment.  

Black said his company has worked hard to compromise with homeowners, and promises to be a good neighbor.

“In addition to complying to Livingston Parish ordinances, Southern Aggregates integrated modifications to its original design and plans which are not required by regulation or ordinances, but were necessary to meet the requests of person from the Oak Hills community,” Black told DEQ representatives during the public hearing.

Residents present remained unconvinced and asked the DEQ to deny any permit.

The DEQ will take the comments from the public hearing under consideration before making a final decision on the permit.


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