St. Cloud’s City Council during its Thursday meeting voted 3-2 to pay $2.48 million and resume treating leachate at its sewage treatment plant, as part of a settlement agreement with Waste Connections of Osceola County.

Deputy Mayor Linette Matheny and Council Member Keith Trace voted against the move. The Council’s decision comes after Waste Connections filed a lawsuit against the city in November seeking $16 million in damages in response to the Council’s June 2019 decision to stop accepting leachate for treatment.

Under terms of the settlement agreement, all terms of the original contract remain unchanged except the Leachate Disposal Agreement term will be extended from April 22, 2029 to June 10, 2032, the Leachate Storage Facility Lease term is now extended from June 15, 2029 to June 10, 2032, and the Sludge Disposal Agreement term is extended from June 10, 2024 to June 10, 2032

Leachate is a landfill byproduct that forms when rainwater filters through wastes in a landfill. When the rainwater comes in contact with buried wastes, it leaches, or draws out, constituents from those wastes.

Leachate collected at the landfill is then treated with municipal sewage at the sewage treatment plant.