Frustrated homeowners spoke out at a South Bend council meeting Monday evening, asking for a more permanent solution to their water woes.
Several residents who live near the former New Energy ethanol plant have experienced flooding since the plant closed its doors in November. About two weeks ago, the city reached an agreement with the owners of the facility to turn one of the pumps back on in an attempt to lower the water levels and stop the flooding.
Since the pump turned on, the water levels did drop, and residents say the flooding in their basements has stopped as well. But residents say they want more than a temporary fix.
City leaders have been working on ways to deal with the flooding and water issues, and say that they are working towards a more permanent solution.
“And as we can see, Mayor Pete Buttigieg has also joined in without efforts to work along with the city, to work along with the council to make sure that the neighbors have been taken care of,” said Councilman Oliver Davis.
New Energy was sold to two liquidation companies in an auction earlier in February. The sale is being challenged for a second time in U.S. bankruptcy court this week, a challenge which the city hopes is successful.
South Bend officials say they hope that an operator, instead of liquidators, can take over the plant and turn the pumps on for good.