Youngsville and LCG Reach Agreement On Dispute Over Anselm Coulee Maintenance
Oct 24, 2018 07:27PM
● By Flint Zerangue, Sr.
(Lafayette Parish) Following the devastating floods of August 2016, Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) presented a plan to rededicate a portion of an existing millage to fund much-needed drainage projects in flood-prone areas. The citizens of Lafayette Parish approved the measure, making $9M in one-time funding immediately available for deferred maintenance drainage projects, plus an additional $2.5M annually to bolster stormwater management.
The top drainage projects were chosen and prioritized by taking into account the number of addresses affected and cost per address, the percentage of area in a flood zone, the number of repetitive loss claims to FEMA, and the complexity of each project.
One of the initial drainage projects atop the list is Anselm Coulee, a section of which runs through an unincorporated portion of Lafayette Parish and the City of Youngsville.
However, when Youngsville Mayor Ken Ritter reviewed the Intergovernmental Agreement outlining the drainage project from LCG, Ritter refused to sign stating the agreement unfairly made the City of Youngsville responsible for maintaining some 5000 feet of the coulee into perpetuity.
Youngsville and LCG officials butted heads for nearly a month as both parties wanted the coulee cleaned but neither wanted to maintain it long-term.
However, at a press conference today, Youngsville Mayor Ken Ritter and Lafayette Mayor-President Joel Robideaux announced that the dispute had been resolved and that the project would move forward as planned. The amended agreement was also signed during the press conference.
The Anselm project is currently back on schedule to be completed during the first quarter of 2019.
Both Ritter and Robideaux complemented their staff’s and other elected officials for working together for the common good of the community.
To learn more about all of the scheduled drainage projects, LCG has set up a website that outlines each project and its current status. Visit https://projects.lafayettela.gov/projects to learn more.