Parish enters into agreement for Lucy Levee Trail Phase II

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 12, 2022

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EDGARD — The St. John the Baptist Parish Council took a step forward in the development of Phase II of the Lucy Levee Trail during this week’s St. John the Baptist Parish Council meeting in Edgard.

The Parish Council approved a resolution to enter into an agreement with DOTD required to proceed with the construction of a 10-foot-wide asphalt trail on the crown of the levee on the West Bank of St. John the Baptist Parish. The project will include an approach ramp to increase accessibility, as well as three bonfire shelves, benches and signage in Edgard.

The construction of the project will be funded by an 80/20 cost share through DOTD and the St. John Parish recreation budget.

Earlier this year, the Parish Council entered into a professional services agreement with Meyer Engineers for Phase II of the Lucy Levee Trail Project. The cost of the agreement was estimated at $265,373, with an entire estimated cost of construction coming in a $2.2 million.

The completed Phase I of the Lucy Levee Trail, also designed by Meyer Engineers, spans from East 12th Street to Terry Court. Phase II is intended to extend the existing Lucy trail to the Edgard Courthouse in an effort to promote healthier lifestyles for area residents through expanded opportunities for walking, touring and biking.

Councilman At-Large Lennix Madere said the agreement with DOTD will save the parish money that should be used to fund other quality of life initiatives in the community.

The Parish Council approved two other cooperative endeavor agreements during the November 8 meeting.

A CEA with the State of Louisiana’s Department of Treasury was required for the purchase of fire and safety equipment. According to Parish President Jaclyn Hotard, St. John the Baptist Parish received a line-item appropriation of $250,000 in Act 170 of the 2022 Regular Legislative Session to be used for this purpose.

Now that the CEA has been approved, St. John Parish can be reimbursed by the State Treasury for the purchase of the fire and safety equipment.

The Parish Council also voted for St. John Parish to enter into a CEA with St. James Parish, the Town of Gramercy, the Town of Lutcher, the River Parishes Tourist Commission and the Festival of the Bonfires to promote annual bonfire season festivities.

St. John Parish will contribute $19,109.61 toward the insurance premium for the Festival of the Bonfires, scheduled for December 9-11 at Lutcher Park. This expense will be funded through the Public Safety Department.

Director of Public Safety Travis Perrilloux said the $19,109.61 is only the part St. John Parish will contribute toward the insurance costs for the festival, with the total premium coming in at a much higher number.

Councilman Madere explained, “When you’re dealing with bonfires and a lot of people out there, it’s a dangerous situation. Insurance is high just for your house. With this type of event, they are really going to stick it to you…We couldn’t afford this type of insurance unless we have a partnership.”