Council OKs seeking coronavirus money
The St. Landry Parish Council approved applying for up to $2.3 million in reimbursement for expenses directly related to the coronavirus.
In a teleconference meeting, Amanda Cain, finance director and acting administrator, said parish government won’t have $2.3 million in expenses, but the CARES Act funding does offer 100% reimbursement.
FEMA reimburses 75% of emergency expenses, she said.
The funding will not cover lost revenue. Cain said the shutdown of gambling in the parish eliminated a source of revenue for two months, she said.
The parish government can request reimbursement for COVID-19 expenses through Dec. 30 and the deadline to apply is Jan. 31, 2021.
Council member Jerry Red suggested parish government buy air purifiers for its meeting room, noting that many members have underlying health conditions making them vulnerable to the virus.
Parish weed spraying program may be in place in a month
A herbicide spraying program for St. Landry Parish road sides may be in place in a month.
The spraying program has been discussed at Parish Council meetings for at least two months with the cost being a major hurdle.
The shutdown of gambling businesses, video poker and Evangeline Downs, drilled a hole in the parish budget.
Spraying costs for areas not covered by special road districts were estimated at about $70,000.
The chemicals would cost $15,000 to $20,000 if the parish bought them compared to $60,000 through a contractor.
Russell Schexnider, public works director, reported progress on training existing employees to become certified to buy and apply herbicides.
Three employees are ready to take the certification tests in the next couple of weeks, he said.
Once the employees pass the tests, a truck will be rigged to do the spraying.
The parish would use an “old” truck now designated for culvert-clearing, he said. The truck has a 1,500 gallon tank.