Lafayette

Oct 17, 2013 10:38 AM by AP

Youngsville mayor not happy over park vote

YOUNGSVILLE, La. (AP) - Youngsville Mayor Wilson Viator said he's disgusted and very, very disappointed with a vote by the Lafayette Consolidated Government.

The Advertiser reports ( ) board members on Tuesday refused to pass an ordinance that would shift control of Youngsville's Foster Park from Lafayette to Youngsville.

The ordinance gave Youngsville the crucial right to allow Green T. Lindon Elementary School, which is adjacent to Foster Park, a portion of the land so it could expand.

"They're hurting the children with this vote," Viator said. "If the council members had a problem with the ordinance, they should be man enough to pick up the phone and explain their concerns. What's the next step? They're going to put (it) back on the agenda, and I will get the five votes needed for it to pass."

Green T. Lindon has been overcrowded for years. School secretary Erica Benoit says 883 students with 20 classes are inside the building while 19 other classes must meet in nearby trailers. Viator said the owner of Foster Park's land, Youngs Industries, had offered to donate the land to Youngsville on the condition that the school got a portion for expansion and the rest be maintained as a park.

According to a Sept. 26 memo from LCG Parks and Recreation director Gerald Boudreaux, LCG currently spends $32,000 annually to maintain Foster Park, not including the cost of the lease. The LCG lease expires in 2025.

The nonprofit, 1,400-member Broussard Youngsville Youth Association, which is part of LCG Parks and Recreation, plays hundreds of games at Foster Park each year. BYYA met with Viator and Youngsville Recreation Director Tim Robichaux last month to craft an agreement that the sports league would have access to Foster Park. But some council members complained the language did not appear in the ordinance. Instead it promised that Foster Park would be maintained primarily as a park after some land was given to the school.

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