Documenter name: Debra Derrick 

Agency holding meeting: DeQuincy City Council

Date: September 12, 2022

Summary: The DeQuincy Monthly Council Meeting commenced at 6:00 pm. There were 12 agenda items on the docket, including approval of home condemnations and discussions about property issues. 

The Scene

The atmosphere was very casual with the public, city workers, and council members strolling in and conversing with each other. Present at the meeting were 9 city employees, 14 private citizens, and a DeQuincy journalist. The council meeting commenced at 6:00. All members of the council were present along with Mayor Smith and the city attorney, Doug Cox.

Notes

First, the council unanimously approved August 8, 2022 regular meeting minutes and August 31, 2022 special meeting minutes. (Read our notes from that meeting here.) The September 12, 2022 meeting agenda was unanimously approved as well. 

Then, city employees reported updates to the council in the areas of finance, code enforcement, fire and police service, public works, sewage, and the city. This was quickly reviewed by each represented department: Finance, Fire, Police, Code Enforcement, Public Works, Sewer, and City Reports. Anyone interested can go to http://app.la.state.la.us to view the Financial Report for the year ended September 30, 2020. 

  • The Fire Department received the air packs needed and a discussion ensued. The council discussed plans to prevent the fire departments from having outdated equipment, to manage ordering new air packs and preventing further emergent situations as there were before. 
  • The Police Department representative addressed the amount of calls, accidents, tickets, arrests,and reported money from fines for the month of August being $53,300. 
  • The Code Enforcement Officer reported on new infractions within the city limits. A Public Works employee spoke about continuing maintenance in the different areas of the city. 
  • The representative of the Sewer Department explained the reason for unfinished work which was due to the equipment needed being shipped from Sweden. He was unable to provide an estimated time of arrival. 

Public Comment

This was eventful in that Mr. Anthony Suren of 105 Jefferson St. was enraged by the unkept condition of Mr. David Jones’ property at 201 Jefferson St. Council took note of situation. Mr. Jones rebuked claims of Mr. Suren. Council took note and the council chairman called them to order repeatedly. 

Then, Joseph Eagles spoke to the council about the Grand Ave. gym that had been broken into, vandalized, and 4 air conditioners stolen. He said, “I have repeatedly called the police without any response”. The council took note. The policeman in the meeting asked Mr. Eagles how soon he called the police, and he said that it was “about two weeks” later.  The officer said: “We need to be called immediately after it happens.” 

Policies and Decisions

  • Ella Chapman to address the council regarding being granted a variance for mobile home placement. This was tabled. 
  • David Jones addressed the council regarding an extension on his variance to live in a travel trailer on his property at 201 Jefferson St. He asked for an extension on his variance to live in a camper trailer until his house was finished. The council agreed on the extension for 30 days. 
  • Authorized Mayor Smith to go out for bids on surplus vehicles and to sell to the highest bidder and if no bids then, authorize the city to sell for junk a 2014 white Ford truck. 
  • The city council has 20 properties up for condemnation, and they’re taking them about five at a time to prevent overwhelming the council. The decisions made during this meeting: 
    • Two structures were approved to be condemned without anyone present to discuss the condemnation: 110 Self St and 1109 Banneker St. The city lawyer, Doug Cox was asked about legalities with the condemnation at 1109 Banneker St. He responded, “yes, it is legal and you can proceed.”
    • The condemnation hearing for 1108 Richard Allen St. was set for October 10, 2022. 
  • The council approved, with recordation with the Calcasieu Parish Clerk of Courts, the Quit Claim Deed from Brookshire Brothers, Inc. to the City of DeQuincy totaling 1.717 acres.
  • The council introduced and set a public hearing October 10, 2022 amending the FYE September 30, 2022 budget. 
  • Potholes and washouts around the city are being prioritized and scheduled for repairs, based on severity and need. 

The council adjourned at 7:12 pm.

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