Parish Council Meeting – July 20, 2015

ParishCouncil072015-Senator Long was unable to attend.

-The council approved entering into a Multi-Jurisdictional Consortium Agreement through the workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

A public hearing was held to hear any comments or objections relative to the adoption of:

  1. The Council tabled the submission of an application for funding under the State of LA FY 2016/2017 LCDBG Program. Funding can be used for projects regarding: Sewer improvements ($1 million max), Water improvements ($800,000 max), Street improvements ($600,000 max), and Fire protection ($500,000 max). Projects will take place in low income areas in the parish.
  2. The Council approved the Ordinance 06-2015 to request the judges in the 10th to implement a $10.00 fee on every defendant who is convicted after trial or pleads guilty. (excludes traffic violations)

-The Council approved the adoption of the resolution confirming reappointment to the following boards.

  1. Mr. William R. Zeigler for Natchitoches Parish Tourism Commission
  2. Mr. Ludlow McNeely for appointment to Natchitoches Waterworks District 2 Board.
  3. Mr. Henry Kinberger for the Natchitoches Parish Planning and Zoning Boards.

-The council approved the Ordinance 07-2015 to remove Parish Road 343-A known as Bud Boyd road located in Campti from the Parish Road Systems.

-The Council approved the Parish President to execute a revised Cooperative Endeavor Agreement with the State of LA Office of Facility Planning and Control for the Coco Bend Road Project in association with the additional right- of way that will be required for proper construction of the road. $280,000 worth of State funds are being used to complete this construction. Local services have to match these funds with $93,000.

-The Council approved the President to enter into contracts as needed for the required action to be taken to complete the required right-of-way for this project.

-The council approved the Parish President to contract for the sale of timber removed from the newly purchased Parish property located at the intersection of LA-117 and LA-478.

-The Council approved for the Parish President to solicit proposals for the repair of voids on the north abutment bridge on the Johnson Chute Road and to execute a contract. Questions about Posey Road came from Veronica Hargrove as well as a petition from frequent travelers of Posey Road, asking the council to take action to repair the road. The funding and the equipment to make improvements is not available at this time.

-The Council approved the Parish President to execute an “Act of Transfer and Acceptance” between the Parish of Natchitoches and the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development for the transfer Parish of the DOTD right-of-way in the bypassed state route LA. 9, as described in the Act of Transfer and the Resolution Adopted by the Natchitoches Police Jury on Sept. 20th, 2006.

Report from the Advisory Commission on Parish Roads:

Commission members presented the report beginning with a short disclaimer. The evaluation by the board was made with the date made available to them and their evaluation is not the only/ best solution.

90% of the 977 parish roads are in poor condition. A majority of the road operations are centralized in Natchitoches. The commission suggested two finance scenarios based on the conclusion that there needs to be and asset management approach and a maintenance plan needs to be created. There needs to be a system to monitor accountability of what is being done and what is being paid for and how. It was strongly suggested that road funds be placed in a restricted account and any use of the funds should be published. A website can be created for monitoring and transparency to keep the public informed of what is taking place and being worked on.

Some funding solution suggestions:

  1. Add funds for maintenance personnel.
  2. Reconstruct financing for equipment.
  3. .5% sales tax parish wide
  4. Add property value/ mileage tax
  5. Enforce .5% tax for 5 years then phase in other tax

They hope to give voters the opportunity to decide.

-The council discussed the proposed Cooperative Endeavor Agreement with the Campti Field of Dreams organization with the use of three tracts of Parish property for its Agri-business operations. This is an economic development project that has provided fresh fruit and vegetables to low income communities. They would like to expand and help support small business in sustainable agriculture want to utilize sites in Campti, Robeline, Coulterville, as centers for agriculture in that area.

-The Council approved the intro. Of ordinance #08-2015 a budget amendment for the 2015 Operation Budget. Basically a budget alignment. Council has a month to contact Mrs. Miley with questions.

-The approved holding an election in Fire Protection District 4 of the Parish of Natchitoches on November 21st, 2015, to authorize the renewal of a special tax there in.

Reports:

  1. Public works- There is a currently a shortage of inmates available to do outside work. A new group should be coming in soon.
  2. OCS/Head Start- the program is on target according to program specialist. There are 259 children enrolled in the program. The summer feeding program started June 1st and is currently feeding 451 children breakfast and 522 children lunch.
  3. Treasurer- There are currently 104 inmates. Council received quarterly budget report.

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