NewsLafayette Parish


Advertiser: State funding in limbo over LCG drainage project property

Posted at 11:36 AM, Sep 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-06 12:36:32-04

State funds earmarked to reimburse LCG costs in a massive drainage project are on hold because of property issues, The Daily Advertiser is reporting.

Lafayette Consolidated Government was in line to get $48.6 million from the state for its massive Bayou Vermilion Flood Control project, which centers on two sets of detention ponds: four on the Vermilion River by Homewood Drive and four on Coulee Ile des Cannes near Duhon Road, the newspaper is reporting.

The Daily Advertiser's article says the state has been reimbursing LCG since April for work on the project, to the tune of $19 million so far, according to Jacques Berry, communications director for the state’s Division of Administration.

But another $22 million in payments have been frozen while state officials await more information, which the Guillory administration says it is working to assemble and provide, the newspaper reports.

But, the newspaper reports, there's an issue with the Duhon Road project, and who owns the property it's being constructed upon. After LCG wasn't able to purchase the lot, Rigid Constructors worked out a servitude and purchase agreement with the owners, the newspaper reports.

That's the same contractor whose contracts with LCG for the St. Martin Parish spoil banks project has been questioned.

In today's Daily Advertiser story, the newspaper reports that Rigid began work under a servitude agreement the company worked out with the land owners.

At the end of that agreement, Rigid paid the land owners $453,395 for the property and gave LCG a servitude on the condition that the local government would buy the land from its contractor at an undetermined price on a later date, the Daily Advertiser reports.

That purchase price is a lot more than the appraised value of the land - and the city can't pay more than the appraised value, the paper reports.

To read the Advertiser's whole story with all the details, click here.