Soddy commissioner facing illegal dumping fines - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Soddy commissioner facing illegal dumping fines

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SODDY-DAISY, TN. (WRCB) -- Allen Lewis is surprised his next door neighbor, Harmon Enterprises, faces nasty fines for dumping septic waste into a sewer, spreading a foul smell in the neighborhood.

Commissioner Shane Harmon owns it and says an employee is responsible for the dumping.

Business owner Dwayne Hickman says, "The smell, it is not terribly bad but once the wind is blowing and it is 90-something degrees, you will smell it."

Harmon Enterprises dumps both septic and restaurant grease and it is unknown how much of each were in the sewer lines.

Neighbors, fed up with the smell, first brought the issue to the Waste Water Treatment Authority in January and it began to investigate.

Dwayne Hickman works across the street and says Harmon may not be fully responsible.

"We have had trouble with this sewer ever since we have been here," he says. "It's been at least three of four years. We have called the WWTA numerous times."

Channel 3 checked with the Better Business Bureau and Harmon has an "A+" rating and no previous issues on record.

The commissioner could not talk on camera but says he did fire the employee accused of dumping the sewage. He says his next battle will be in court.

Allen Lewis defends Harmon and says, "He understood the problem and addressed it by firing the employee. He has actually come and apologized to me for any inconvenience."

"He has helped all kinds of people around here," says Hickman. "I can't understand why they are on him so hard."

WWTA's lawyer says they won't know what the fines will be until they get more records from Harmon.

Septic companies are only allowed to dump in approved sites.

Harmon says he hopes to have things sorted out by the end of next month.

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