St. Charles to discuss grant use

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 24, 2008


Staff Reporter

HAHNVILLE — The St. Charles Council Legislative Committee is scheduled to begin initial discussions regarding a grant that will aid in growth planning that the parish was awarded earlier this year.

St. Charles Public Information Officer Renee Allemand said that the parish announced this past August that the community was one of five in the state chosen to participate in the 2008 Louisiana Community Planning Program. Allemand said the program, which is put on by the Center for Planning Excellence (CPEX) out of Baton Rouge, comes with a $100,000 seed grant to aid in “Smart Growth” planning efforts and direct staff assistance from CPEX with community outreach and education programs, project management and oversight.

St. Charles Planning and Zoning Director Kim Marousek said the funding will allow the parish to develop a long-range Comprehensive Plan that is based on public input.

“The future land use policies developed out of this planning process will provide a blueprint for the parish that will lead to fair, predictable and cost-effective decisions and public investment,” Marousek said.”

St. Charles Parish President V.J. St. Pierre said the parish now has a unique opportunity to create a unified vision for the future of St. Charles with regard to planning and beautification efforts.

“With the growth we continue to witness in our parish, we are always seeking solutions to managing new development in a way that keeps the integrity of our community intact,” St. Pierre said. “We’ll take what we learn through this planning process and apply it in future scenarios.”

Allemand said St. Charles Parish was required to provide a dollar-for-dollar match for the funds they requested. She said the work of Marousek and Grants Officer Holly Fonseca helped St. Charles Parish edge out competition from 20 other Louisiana communities.

Allemand said the initial meeting regarding the land use plan will be held Tuesday October 28 at 5 p.m. at the St. Charles Courthouse council chambers.