Posted: Jul 14, 2011 9:57 PM by Shawn Kline
Updated: Jul 14, 2011 10:25 PM
A ground breaking scheduled for St. Landry Parish's first Veterans Memorial doesn't go as planned.
In fact, the ground breaking didn't happen at all.
The only movement outside Evangeline Downs are the passing cars.
A $300,000 War Memorial project, set to be built there, is put on hold.
St. Landry Parish President Don Menard says it will still be built but the question now is, when?
"Why's this all coming up at the last minute?" Reporter Shawn Kline asked.
"I'm not quite sure," Menard answered. "I was led to believe the property was going to be donated."
There was supposed to be a ground breaking Thursday on the land (which was expected to be donated by Evangeline Downs). However, that plan was called off just the week before.
"Because they are a gambling entity and we are a governmental entity," Menard says, "there are laws that don't allow gambling entities to donate property to us."
No property, no memorial. However, Menard says Parish Council is weighing their options.
One possibility is leasing the land from Evangeline Downs at just $1/year. The other option is a 2.5 acre donation just down the street on Highway 182.
"If it happens on the Evangeline Downs property or at this 2.5 acre site offered to us this afternoon, it doesn't matter to us." Menard says, "what does matter is getting it done."
At this point, St. Landry Parish officials are set on constructing the memorial but the question remains, when?