Improved phone technology coming to St. Charles Parish

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 4, 1999

By LEONARD GRAY / L’Observateur / May 4, 1999

HAHNVILLE – Residents using wireless phones and calling 9-1-1 will soon be locked in as to identifying number by 2000 and by physical location within a handful of yards by 2001, according to Maj. Sam Zinna of the St.Charles Communications District.

Zinna’s report outlined progress made in the 9-1-1 system, including the addition of telecommunications devices for the deaf, addressing the so- called Y2K problem and more training for staff.

Zinna added that the State Legislature is currently reviewing bills to establish a surcharge on wireless phones to pay for technology allowing a wireless phone user to be fixed into the local 9-1-1 system, wherever they may be.

By 2001, Zinna hopes, such users can then be located within 160 meters, using satellite technology.

Also, he continued, the financing for the 9-1-1 system is to be changed from the present tariff on phone bills to a flat rate. Currently, the tariffis 64 cents for each residential user and $1.74 per business. That presentrate will be locked in as it is now for the foreseeable future.

In other action, the Parish Council – Welcomed District 3 Council Member Darnell “Dee” Abadie of Destrehan, replacing Ron Phillips, who relocated out of the parish. “Let’s get towork!” she commented.

Approved an increase in the solid waste collection service charge, from $9.17 per month to $9.26 per month, a Consumer Price Index increase of1.6 percent, mandated by the contract with Waste Management ofLouisiana Inc.

Approved, after some debate, a grant application for a sidewalk construction project in Norco, along Fifth Street from Apple Street to Norco Elementary School, submitted by Councilman Dickie Duhe.

Curtis Johnson, said other areas needed sidewalks as well and suggested developing a more comprehensive application to address these needs.

This was rebuffed by Councilman Brian Champagne, who commented, “Nobody had a sidewalk problem until Dickie brought it up.”This brought an instant, angry response from Johnson, who said he had long tried to get sidewalks in Dianne Place Subdivision, with no success.

Duhe commented, “I just wanted a simple, little sidewalk,” and the application was approved to be sent on to the state by a 7-2 vote, Johnson and Barry Minnich voting no.

Removed, after some discussion, a proposed ordinance to revise culvert permit rules. Councilman Terry Authment suggested some revisions onallowing installation of culverts in open-ditch subdivisions.

From its description, Parish President Chris Tregre said, “I think this is a disaster,” and also commented, “You might as well rescind the entire ordinance.”The proposed ordinance was removed from consideration.

Approved a change order for the 1997 street repairs program to decrease the contract amount and increase the contract time.

Approved a $1.1 million contract for construction of the Kellogg PumpStation by All South General Contractors Inc.

Approved a change order for the Cousins Canal Pump Station, adding 53 contract days. Thirty days was because of the fall tropical storms andhurricane and 23 days was because of delays in moving utility lines.

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