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Indiana county allowed to develop fertilizer plant

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The state won't stand in the way of a fertilizer plant that a Pakistan-based group is developing in southwestern Indiana despite reservations expressed by Gov. Mike Pence, his office said Tuesday.

Pence directed the Indiana Finance Authority not to block Posey County from backing the Midwest Fertilizer Corp. plant. The move comes after the governor on May 17 withdrew the state's offer of economic incentives because fertilizer made by Pakistan-based parent company Fatima Group had been used in bombs in Afghanistan that have killed U.S. troops.

"The State of Indiana stands by its decision to withdraw support for the Midwest Fertilizer project since Department of Defense officials still have not been able to independently confirm Fatima Group's promise to replace their current fertilizer in Pakistan with a formula less susceptible to misuse by hostile forces in the region," Pence spokeswoman Christy Denault said in a prepared statement.

"Despite a difference of opinion on the matter, Governor Pence respects the prerogative of local officials to continue to explore the possibility of moving forward," Denault said.

After Pence withdrew state support, the Posey County commissioners and council voted to give preliminary approval to the proposed plant, including a $1.3 billion bond issue to finance the project in the county just west of Evansville. In doing so, the local officials stepped into the role the state once held when the bonds were originally issued in December by the Indiana Finance Authority to help pay for the project.

Those bonds had a six-month maturity period, after which they were sold to investors and the proceeds put into an escrow account. The idea was that by the time the bonds matured, the plant's developers would be ready to proceed with construction and would receive the bond funding from the escrow account.

But the state funding hit a roadblock in January, when Pence learned of the U.S. military's concerns over Fatima's fertilizer ending up in bombs killing troops.

Since then, Fatima Group has made several changes to its supply chain and is now working on a new less-explosive fertilizer formula. Lt. Gen. Michael Barbero, a U.S

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  1. John, unfortunately CTRWD wants to put the tank(s) right next to a nature preserve and at the southern entrance to Carmel off of Keystone. Not exactly the kind of message you want to send to residents and visitors (come see our tanks as you enter our city and we build stuff in nature preserves...

  2. 85 feet for an ambitious project? I could shoot ej*culate farther than that.

  3. I tried, can't take it anymore. Untill Katz is replaced I can't listen anymore.

  4. Perhaps, but they've had a very active program to reduce rainwater/sump pump inflows for a number of years. But you are correct that controlling these peak flows will require spending more money - surge tanks, lines or removing storm water inflow at the source.

  5. All sewage goes to the Carmel treatment plant on the White River at 96th St. Rainfall should not affect sewage flows, but somehow it does - and the increased rate is more than the plant can handle a few times each year. One big source is typically homeowners who have their sump pumps connect into the sanitary sewer line rather than to the storm sewer line or yard. So we (Carmel and Clay Twp) need someway to hold the excess flow for a few days until the plant can process this material. Carmel wants the surge tank located at the treatment plant but than means an expensive underground line has to be installed through residential areas while CTRWD wants the surge tank located further 'upstream' from the treatment plant which costs less. Either solution works from an environmental control perspective. The less expensive solution means some people would likely have an unsightly tank near them. Carmel wants the more expensive solution - surprise!

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