Workers making strides in repairing damaged streetlights

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 16, 2022

LAPLACE — Nifty handiwork by St. John the Baptist Parish utility workers is resulting in significant savings of taxpayer dollars.

During the Parish Council meeting this past Tuesday in LaPlace, Peter Montz, director of procurement and purchasing for the parish, reported workers have made tremendous strides in repairing damaged streetlights. As a result, the council approved a resolution rejecting all bids for emergency street lighting restoration.

Montz said damaged lights will continue to be repaired in-house and added that more than 85% of the work has been competed, although the process will be ongoing.

“It was more economical and more timely,” Montz said regarding the in-house repairs.

“That’s a good thing,” Councilwoman Tammy Houston agreed.

Councilman Tonia Schnyder hopes to see even more work being completed by parish workers.

“It is indicative that we have good workers; they get the job done,” Councilman Lennix Madere said.

Also discussed during the meeting:

-The parish will be receiving more than $500,000 in dividend checks through the Louisiana Worker’s Compensation Corporation.

-During a proclamation ceremony honoring National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, Sheriff Mike Tregre asked council members for the opportunity to address them at their April 26 meeting. Tregre explained he would like to discuss the possibility of purchasing a digital message board to be placed in a highly visible spot in LaPlace.

He said the board would alert drivers to road closures or storm warnings. Additionally, he would like to advertise upcoming events the sheriff’s office is sponsoring as well as parish events.

-A resolution was passed that added 60 calendar days of construction and another $82,772 to the LA SAFE Airline and Main Street Complete Street Project. Montz said the additional time was necessary because of delays in manufacturing of material and deliveries. The uptick in expenses is for materials required for the revised water and sewer plans, as required by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. Montz said those plans were not in the original contract but reflect recent DOTD changes.

– Council members also denied two rezoning requests, following the lead of the Planning Commission. Both involved changing R-1 residential districts, one to Residential District Three and the other to a commercial district.

At least one of the individuals will likely represent a redeveloped proposal in an upcoming meeting.