Agency holding meeting: Lake Charles City Council
Location: City Council Chambers, Lake Charles City Hall
Date: February 15, 2023, 5:30 pm
Documenter: Carl M. Ambrose, Jr.
The crowd was small for the last meeting before Mardi Gras. The city obtained authorization for a couple of bond issues and purchased some land.
The gavel sounded, and the meeting was brought to order by Mr. Ieyoub; Mr. Eckard gave the invocation, with the Pledge being led by Mr. Weatherford. Mrs. Thibodeaux conducted a roll call with President Ieyoub, Vice-President Eckard, Mrs. August, Mr. Geyen, Mr. Weatherford, Mr. Marks, and Mr. Harvey, all present. Mr. Ieyoub asked for approval of the minutes from the February 1, 2023, meeting to be approved. The vote was 7-0 for approval. There were no deferred or deleted items.
- Mr. Weatherford accepted chair appointments to review bids for Various Citywide Drainage and Ancillary Infrastructure Improvements Phase 2, purchasing one tandem axle dump truck for use by the Wastewater Division of Public Works and one Grapple truck for the Solid Waste Division of Public Works.
- He also accepted the chair for purchasing three one-ton regular cab trucks for the Water Division of Public Works and bids for work on the Southeast Water Treatment Plant.
- Mr. Harvey will chair the review of bids for four new one-half-ton extended cab trucks for the Vehicle Maintenance Division(one), Engineering Division(one), and Wastewater Division(two).
- Mr. Eckard will chair the review of bids for two three-quarter-ton regular cab trucks for the Water Division of Public Works.
Mr. Ieyoub then moved up one of the items on the agenda, an agreement between the city and McNeese State Universit for the establishment and construction of the LNG Center of Excellence. Dr. Daryl V. Burckel, McNeese’s president, was there to answer any questions the city council had concerning the project.
In a brief statement, Dr. Burckel said: “I am just thankful for the work that we have been doing with the city on this front, as well as the many fronts, we’re just excited to partner with the city, the mayor and his staff and council and I would like to thank you.”
Ms. August had a question concerning the cost breakdown. Mayor Hunter responded,” Mrs. August, our contribution has a capped dollar amount and any overages, McNeese will have to hustle,” as he laughed. The ordinance passed 7-0.
Public hearings for condemnations
Resolutions setting dates for a public hearing for condemnations on April 5, 2023:
-3308 South General Wainwright, Geraldine Savoy January, owner
-1020 17th St., Charles Stafford Valentine and Annette F. Braxton Valentine, owners
-317 Brammer Lane, Raymond Antoine, owner
Only one ordinance for demolition was a structure on 1220 Opelousas St, Willis Jacob, St.; owner Claude Brooks, III. Mr. Hester, for the City, described with photos, Mr. Morgan said that the owner had contacted the city and was in the process of trying to demolish the structure. He suggested regular delays, and Mr. Harvey agreed. Motion for regular delays passed 7-0.
Policies and decisions
There were several items up for final action.
- The first was a bid for an agreement for the Downtown Streetscape Phase II; Mr. Harvey, the chair, recommended rejecting the proposal and issuing a rebid. The motion to reject and rebid passed 7-0.
- There was a little discussion about the amendment to the Code of Ordinances as it relates to the proximity of establishments permitted to serve alcohol to churches, schools, and other similar places. Mr. Marks asked for clarification from Mr. Morgan due to receiving several calls. “State law includes, among those establishments, correctional facilities and daycare centers, the city ordinance did not have daycare centers or correctional facilities, so we’re amending and adding those. Those are both certified and licensed facilities…” Morgan said. There was one card to speak, Mrs. Ellaweena G. Woods. Mrs. Woods stated, “I am so happy that Mr. Marks asked a question that clarified what I wanted to speak about.” She thanked Mr. Marks again for asking the question because she “had some concerns” and said she had received several calls. There needed to be a better understanding of what was happening, as Mr. Morgan clarified earlier, and some misinformation. The motion passed 7-0.
- The council passed a motion authorizing the city to purchase land in the 1500 block of N. MLK and receive bids for the fencing repairs at Nelson Park ballfields, Nos.1 and 2.
- The council also accepted the Center East and Chennault Water Treatment Plants- Pressure Filter Rehab as substantially complete and the advertising of the 45-day lien period.
- The City was authorized to receive proposals for the appraisal services for the “HOME and CDBG housing programs and to receive bids on the North Beach Recreational Pier, Civic Center Exterior Repairs, and repairs and improvements to Prejean Park ballfields.
- A resolution authorizing the cancellation of the City Council Agenda Meeting on February 21, 2023.
- Another action saw a resolution authorizing the City to proceed with several development projects for any improvements and additions to the City’s waterwork systems and authorizing application to the Louisiana State Bond Commission for:
- GEORGE WEST Water Plant, involving issuing taxable revenue bonds not to exceed One Million Four Hundred Thousand dollars ($1,400,000)
- SOUTHWEST Water Plant, involving issuing taxable revenue bonds not to exceed One Million Four Hundred Thousand dollars($1,400,000)
- CENTEREAST Water Plant, issuing taxable revenue bonds not to exceed Two Million and No/100 dollars ($2,000,000)
- There was a resolution sponsored by Mr. Geyen thanking Commissioner of Insurance James J. “Jim” Donelon, the Southwest Louisiana Legislative Delegation, and Governor John Bel Edwards for assisting with providing homeowners insurance coverage with an incentive plan for insurance companies to write new business in Louisiana. This passed 7-0.
Other ordinances read into the record
- An ordinance authorized a change order for Rosa Hart Theatre Repairs
- The ordering of the demolition of the following:
-3308 General Wainwright, Geraldine Savoy January, owner
-1020 17th St, Charles Stafford Valentine and Annette F. Braxton Valentine, owners
-317 Brammer Lane, Raymond Antoine, owner.
- The City is authorized to find the most qualified firms responding to a proposal request for appraisal services for the “HOME and CDBG housing programs, as well as bids for the North Beach Recreational Park Pier and the Civic Center Exterior Repairs, and the Prejean Park ballfields. There was also an authorization for issuing twenty million dollars($20,000,000.00) in bonds to be sold to the Drinking Water Revolving Loan Fund for the City of Lake Charles Public Improvement Project.
- An ordinance for creating Chapter 24-Zoning and moving Appendix A to this new section.
- Adopting a Fee Schedule for the City and incorporating it into Appendix A of the Code of Ordinances.
- Authorizing the City to enter into an agreement with Entergy to complete the lighting repairs on the Contraband bayou corridor and purchase a property at 1201 6th Ave.