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Meeting set to address Smarter Fuels smell

By Jason Cannon

jcannon@demopolistimes.com

 

Demopolis will serve as host to a town hall meeting next week to address growing concern surrounding a local business.

Smarter Fuels, a recycling facility that converts vegetable and catfish oils into a replacement for heating fuel, has been cited by neighbors of the facility for the strong odor that emanates from the production process.

The complaints became so numerous that in November, the City of Demopolis sought to file suit against the company.

City Attorney Bill Poole said he is currently gathering information and testimony from those affected and proceeding to move forward as instructed by the council, however the suit has not yet been filed.

Demopolis Mayor Mike Grayson said the meeting is an effort to put all parties involved – city administrators, Smarter Fuels representatives and citizens of Demopolis – on the same page.

“Our interest is in making sure the folks that live close by have their voices heard,” Grayson said.

“We want to let the residents know that we hear their concern.”

Grayson and city officials have a meeting scheduled the day before the Tuesday town hall which Grayson hopes could be an initial step in remedying the problem.

“We don’t want to discourage business in town, but when you’re doing business and negatively impact the neighbors, we need to find solution somehow, someway,” he said.

The meeting, which is open to the public, will begin at 5:30 Feb. 21 at Rooster Hall.