Sewer fees defined for commercial customers
The Port Allen City Council adopted an ordinance to more specifically define usage amounts for the sewer impact fee local businesses pay each month.
The new impact fee categories are:
Light - 1 - 2,499 gallons
Medium - 2,500 - 7,499
Heavy - 7,500+
In May, Mayor Richard Lee asked the council to consider clarifying the commercial sewer impact fee based on average usage instead of facility type.
Jefferson Court Apartment Home uses approximately 23 gallons of water each month for its community laundromat. However, the property is classified as a heavy commercial building and thus charged the maximum $50 impact fee for its water consumption each month, Lee explained.
Homeowners to pay $2,300 for city tie-in
The City Council voted to cover $8,890 in expenses incurred by two homeowners on Avenue B and Whitehead Blvd. who were unknowingly disconnected from the city's main sewer line for nearly a year. The homeowners will each pay $2,300 toward the cost of tying in their lines to the city sewer line.
The total cost of the project was $13,490.
The two homes were originally part of a family property with three homes on it that shared one sewer line.
When the property owner in the middle replaced their sewer lines, the others were disconnected, pumping sewage from the other two homes into their backyards and causing a backup in the drainage.
During the August City Council meeting, three motions proposing the city cover the majority of the costs failed. Since then, the city was "provided some documents from an attorney representing the two property owners," City Attorney Evan Alvarez said. Alvarez called the motion a "fair compromise."
Mayor Richard Lee opposed paying any portion of the costs in previous meetings, referring to the city ordinance which places the full financial burden of tying into the city's main sewer line on homeowners. Councilmembers Garry Hubble and Hugh Riviere agreed to pay for the tie-in in previous meetings but were overruled by councilmembers Ray Helen Lawrence, Brandon Brown and Carey Williams.
Council approves GPS equipment purchase for Water, Sewer and Gas Departments
The City Council approved spending $8,100 for GPS equipment, which will allow the water, sewer and gas department employees to identify underground lines.
The city will purchase two handheld devices and one screen. The devices can be hooked up to a smartphone or the accompanying screen to show the location and type of line underground.
The funds for the equipment will come from the water, sewer and gas funds. The new equipment will ensure continuity of service, Chief Administrative Officer Lance Joseph said. Councilman Hugh Riviere said the equipment would be "money well spent."
Cell tower ordinance on hold
Mayor Richard Lee requested the City Council hold off on adopting an ordinance regulating the placement and design of small cell towers in the city limits.
AT&T has already placed several small cell towers in Port Allen, including one near CouYons and one at the corner of LA1 and Court Street. The small cell towers boost cellular service in the area.
The parish and other municipalities plan to adopt an ordinance regulating the location and design of the towers following discussions with AT&T representatives and collaboration.
The ordinance may be discussed further at the October City Council meeting when more information is available, Mayor Lee said.