D'ville Council re-names Long City Attorney

Greg Fischer
(Left to Right) Long, Landry, Francis Sr, and Aucoin

The Donaldsonville City Council was "business as usual" on Mardi Gras Day. They met for a regular meeting on the evening of February 28.

Director of Postlethwaite and Netterville Mike LeBlanc began the meeting with the annual audit. The council was successful financially, according to LeBlanc. They paid $527,000 in debt last year, and profited $1.6 million. Moreover, D'ville saw over $3 million in sales tax revenues.

"This paints a really good picture for the 2016 fiscal year," LeBlanc said.

LeBlanc did, however, present some non-compliance issues, like clerical errors. He mentioned an issue with signing checks. Next on the list, the council declared an emergency with a sewer pump, and proper documentation did not occur.

It was brought to the council's attention that the system should better document controls and procedures, in order to prevent theft. Also, LeBlanc encouraged the council to take inventory of fixed assets. He noted grant lags. Lastly, he mentioned delinquent accounts with sewer and gas.

"A lot of small towns use water and gas funds to throw in the general fund when they need to," LeBlanc said.

Mayor Sullivan said that last year's warm weather hurt the gas revenue.

The next order of business had to do with a blighted home at 214 Second Street. Curator Ad Hoc for blighted property and demolition proceedings Sid Marchand said the neighbors have been complaining that the home could collapse on another home. The present owner of the home was said to have no intention of doing anything about it.

After some discussion, Rev. Charles Brown Sr., Councilman from District 4, along with Sullivan, appeared anxious to level the property as soon as possible. But City Attorney Charles "Chuck" Long has granted 30 days before the city tears it down, in case the owner chooses to show up. Although, the city has followed all lawful procedures.

The mayor's report saw no opposition. The council unanimously approved funds for everything on the table, except a line item where SJB Group initially estimated $17,500 to repair a storm drain. Findings showed that it could be fixed for $5,000.

"Thank you for saving us $12,000," Councilman Brent Landry said.

Funds were approved for GSA contractors to repair to a drainage leak at Lee and Iberville. Funds were also approved for a $15,000 tourism grant to the Donaldsonville Chamber of Commerce, $50,000 to the River Road African American Museum, and $47,500 to the Donaldsonville Downtown Development District/Main Street Program. Benches were chosen for Crescent Park.

Lastly, the council re-appointed Chuck Long to City Attorney, and Benjamin Johnson to Assistant City Attorney. Marvin Gros was named Civil Service Board Attorney, and Sid Marchand was named Curator Ad Hoc for blighted property and demolition proceedings.

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