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Catawba Indian Nation of South Carolina

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The nation's proposal to finance construction of a $200 million, high-capacity plant is the only active proposal for a regional sewage plant for three South Carolina counties. The Tri-County Regional Wastewater Committee ended an effort that has cost hundreds of thousands of dollars when it voted to disband Dec. 13 in the face of growing opposition. A group of legislators announced a bill Dec. 13 that would limit how much out-of-state wastewater South Carolina plants could take for treatment. The proposed legislation, combined with almost certain opposition from Catawba Riverkeeper Donna Lisenby and the Lake Wateree Homeowners' Association located downstream, prompted the motion to disband. The measure could affect the nation's plan as well. The nation offered to finance a single-plant option, to place a treatment facility in Lancaster County, with a large pipeline running along the eastern bank of the Catawba River. State Rep. Bill Cotty, R-Columbia, called the Catawba proposal "the world's largest porta-potty." Fred Sanders, a Catawba, said the project has never been put before tribal members. It will destroy "burial grounds, ceremonial grounds and clay holes. And to destroy all this for money is beyond my measure," he said. "We are not to disturb Mother Earth, tribal member Claire Wilson said.