The West Baton Rouge Parish Council has introduced an ordinance to merge the last of the parish water districts, Water District 2 in Brusly, with the parish utilities department.
Officer Manager for Parish Utilities Pam Keowen said there were originally three water districts, Water District 1, Water District 2, and Water District 4, but that water districts 1 and 4 have already been merged with parish utilities.
A resolution states that the reason for the merger of Water District 2 with parish utilities is “a desire to maximize governmental efficiency and minimize the cost of providing water to Waterworks District No. 2 customers.” A public hearing is scheduled for April 25 at 6:30 p.m. at a parish council meeting and July 1 would be the merger’s effective date, Chief Administrator Jason Manola said.
Manola said Water District 2 has already approved the merger. “We received a unanimous vote from the current Water District 2,” he said, “and they offered a resolution to actually, like I said, merge into parish utilities.”
President of Water District 2 Jimmy Rills said the water district currently employs four full-time and two part-time employees. Five of those employees will go to work for the parish, with one part-time employee becoming full-time, he said.
Rills noted that not all five employees will work for the parish utilities department, but that some will fill vacancies in other departments.
Manola said parish officials “tried to figure out the skill levels and so forth of all the employees and where they would actually fit in our current pay code. So they would become part of our pay grade, just like all the rest of our employees.”
Rills said the office in Brusly will remain open for billing.