The City of Gonzales has, so far, endured the COVID-19 “crisis” and a disjointed state/federal response while remaining within the budget adopted earlier this year according to CAO Scot Byrd. Two months (April and May) saw significant sales tax revenue generation, the lifeblood of all city services, but not so drastic as feared. If not for social distancing and the donning of masks, concessions to coronavirus, it was business as usual at Monday’s Regular Meeting of the City Council.
A unanimous council (always, it seems) adopted the Resolution authorizing Mayor Barney Arceneaux to “acquire property known as Valentine Woods Subdivision.” The 47 residences on E Silverleaf Dr will be demolished and revert to “natural wetlands in perpetuity” after suffering years of repetitive flood loss. And the city stands to make $25,000 in the bargain.
According to Chief Engineer Jackie Baumann the city is on the hook for “residual costs” ($1,221 per residence), $57,412 not paid up by US Department of Agriculture. Since Gonzales owns Silverleaf Street, USDA will pay the city $72,000 for its demolition.
In other business the council approved reallocation of $70,000 in recreation funding to build a “concession stand and ADA compliant restrooms for the new All Abilities Field” a stone’s throw from City Hall on Irma Blvd. Originally earmarked for batting cages ($34,000) and a brick wall at Field #1 in Municipal Park ($36,000), the funding shift is part of a Cooperative Endeavor with Ascension Parish in furtherance of a Leadership Ascension (Chamber of Commerce) project.
Funding for another recreation project, construction of a kayak launch at Jambalaya Park, was also approved.
The council “rolled forward” the city’s two property tax millage, anticipated to generate an additional $28,000 over the next fiscal year. (1) 1.38 mills toward general operations; (2) 3.27 mills to fund Gonzales Fire Department.
NOTE: Gonzales will provide sandbags for citizens in anticipation of Hurricane Laura. Two locations will be up and running.
- City Barn on S. Darla St
- The wastewater treatment pond on S Burnside Ave.
Bring identification evidencing your residency in the City of Gonzales.