Edgard senior center in need of attention

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 16, 2013

By Richard Meek
Contributing Writer

EDGARD – Nancy Dumas is a frequent visitor to the West Bank Senior Citizen Center in Edgard, taking delight in socializing with her fellow west bank residents and participating in exercise classes, even though it means stepping outside because of the cramped quarters. But she is disturbed by what she sees as an increasing uncleanliness at the small facility, which most agree needs to be expanded and upgraded.
“That place is filthy,” Du mas told the St. John Parish Council during its meeting Tuesday night in Edgard. “It needs cleaning. The bathrooms stink.
“It’s people (using the facility). It is not animals. We should take care of them.”
Dumas said because of an increased number of residents the facility has outgrown its effectiveness. Parish President Natalie Robottom said there is no funding in the budget for an expansion, but if voters approve a bond issue today some of that money could be used to remodel the existing facility. She also suggested Dumas approach the Council on Aging Board to discuss future plans.
Dumas said the COA Board referred her to the council.
“We have not got anything done,” she said, frustration evident in her voice. “We are the west bank. We should have the same amount of (help as the east bank). Everything on the west bank is pushed over. Stop thinking so much of the east bank.”
“We count just as much as the east bank,” she added. “You get our votes.”
Most council members said they were unaware of the deplorable conditions of the bathrooms but expressed disappointment to hear the news.
“You don’t need to go for a bond issue to get the bathroom cleaned,” council member Cheryl Millet said. “There’s no excuse to be using a dirty facility.”
Council member Jaclyn Hotard asked who was responsible for overseeing the bathrooms. Chief Administrative Officer Randy Vincent said it falls under the responsibility of Kia Price, who is the director of purchasing and procurement. Vincent said it was previously his responsibility.
Hotard said she was concerned about why someone was being paid if the building was not clean.
“We are paying for something we are not getting,” she said.
Hotard also expressed concern with the condition of the rest room in the Edgard courthouse. During the meeting Tuesday she had to excuse herself for a short while because of illness.
During that time she used the rest room and said she was surprised at the state of the facility.
“It’s disgusting,” she said. “It’s embarrassing to say this is the courthouse. “