Notes on Monday’s East Ascension Drainage meeting

Image depicts three existing detention ponds, with three more proposed.

An hour-long discussion at Monday’s meeting of East Ascension Drainage was a case study in the major/minor drainage responsibilities inside two east bank municipalities.  Conway Subdivision is located south of I-10, inside the City of Gonzales upon 350 (or so) acres annexed a decade ago.  Detention ponds serving the development do not function properly, with disagreement as to causation but unanimity as to the potential fix, installation of mechanical pumps.

That requires a waiver of Ascension Parish’s Storm Water Detention design requirements.  Article 17-508 of the parish’s development code states:

“The outfall storm water detention facilities shall be gravity driven. Mechanical systems, such as pumps, should not be used for discharging flow from detention ponds.”

But the only fix to Conway’s drainage problems, a lack of storage in those detention ponds, is to install a mechanical pump.  Ultimately, it is the Gonzales City Council that must cast the final vote but the city has adopted Ascension’s regulatory scheme when it comes to all things major drainage.  Parish-provided engineers sign off on drainage plans for every new development in the city as well.

EA Drainage, with six members present to meet the quorum requirements, voted to waive Article 17-508 with several conditions to be met before the mechanical pump can be installed in Conway’s detention ponds.

The curative plan also calls for three additional ponds (see image above).

In other new business:

The lowest responsive bid with Industrial Enterprise was accepted, authorizing President Clint Cointment to enter into a contract not to exceed $358,129.84 in reference to the project for Shadows of Manchac-Phase 1 Sub Surface Drainage Improvements.   The project was budgeted at $498,224.

A resolution was adopted:

WHEREAS, U.S. Congressman Garret Graves announced that federal funding from FEMA in the amount of $7,325,658.22 will go to Ascension Parish and the Terrebonne Parish
School Board; and

WHEREAS, Ascension Parish will receive $1,646,686.75 for costs related to the May 2021 flood event; and

WHEREAS, Ascension Parish would like to allocate these funds to projects in Ascension Parish to benefit the Bluff Swamp, Frog Bayou, Alligator Bayou Basin:

BE IT RESOLVED that the East Ascension Consolidated Gravity Drainage District No. 1 does hereby authorize Parish President Clint Cointment to accept the funding and allocate these
funds specifically to these projects in the Parish


The panel approved a Cooperative Endeavor Agreement between Ascension Parish Government and the U.S. Geological Survey for the operation and upkeep of 15 stream level monitoring locations. The total cost to operate the program is $130,600.00 USGS will contribute $33,000.00 and the Ascension Parish Government contribution is $97,600.00.