Parish council won’t intervene for dog owner
Easy Street resident Rachelle Madison got no sympathy Wednesday when seeking assistance from the St. Mary Parish Council with her three dogs that were impounded by the parish on Sept. 13 for violation of the pit bull ordinance.
The dogs were picked up along with three other pit bulls that Madison said belonged to her mother after the sheriff and marshal’s offices fielded several neighborhood complaints about the dogs, according to a written statement by 3rd Ward Marshal David McCoy.
Her mother’s three pit bulls have since been euthanized and her three dogs are in the care of the Iberia Animal Clinic, Madison said.
The pit bull ordinance requires owners to register pit bulls with the parish and provide an enclosed kennel on top of a cement slab for each dog. In May, Madison was given more time than the ordinance specifies to come into compliance with the pit bull ordinance for a dog that was not among the ones impounded in September, said parish Chief Administrative Officer Henry “Bo” LaGrange. Madison eventually did meet all the regulations for that dog, he added.
“So we have a history here,” LaGrange said. He added that the dogs picked up in September were said by McCoy to be “very aggressive.”
Madison complained about the poor conditions her dogs endured while at the St. Mary Animal Shelter saying that they were covered with fleas and had no food or water when she went to visit.
She also told the council that she had managed to get the help of pit bull rescuer Tia Torres of the Villalobos Rescue Center and the Animal Planet TV show, “Pit Bulls & Parolees.” She said Torres was going to provide the funds to bring the dogs into compliance, but was “turned away” by Animal Shelter Supervisor Ivory Francois who told her there were too many complaints to release the dogs.
Madison has since paid the reclaiming, boarding and transportation fees totaling some $350 to the animal shelter that allowed the dogs to be released to the Iberia Animal Clinic, she said, but now they are “in limbo.”
Madison was told by council Chairman Kevin Voisin that she must come into compliance with the pit bull ordinance in order to bring them home.
“We have the ordinance on the books,” he said and suggested she contact Torres again to seek her help.
In other business the council:
—-Heard from co-chair Joan Adams of the Harvest Moon Festival who invited the council to the festival Saturday in downtown Franklin.
—Adopted a proposed ordinance establishing a 15-mph speed limit on Cajun Way Road in Amelia.
—Introduced ordinances on a lease agreement with the United Houma Nation for office space at 301 Third St. in Morgan City; the proposed 2013 fiscal year budget and five-year capital outlay plan; and adjustment of salaries for the coroner and staff.
—Passed resolutions on the annual state Certification of Compliance of the Off System Bridge Replacement Program, and submission of the Harry P. Williams Memorial Airport capital improvement plan to the Department of Transportation and Development.
—Passed resolutions requesting funding from the state under the provisions of the 2013-2014 Capital Outlay Act for infrastructure improvements at the Charenton Canal Industrial Park for the St. Mary Industrial Park Commission; reconstruction of Charenton Beach Road from La. 87 to the West Atchafalaya Basin Protection Levee; renovation and conversion of existing tourist building to the parish conference center; installation of culverts and associated infrastructure at Middle Road in Bayou Vista for Sub-Gravity Drainage District 1 of District 2; replacement of baseball field lighting and capital improvements at Kemper Williams Park; repair and capital improvements at Elizabeth Davis, Centerville, Sorrell, St. Joseph and Bring Back the Neighborhood parks; an administrative and activity center for St. Mary Association for Retarded Citizens near Centerville; drainage system improvements by Consolidated Drainage District 2; and construction of a new central fire station for Fire Protection District 11 in the Four Corners community.
—Resolutions approving a change order and certificate of substantial completion of Phase 3 of the Martin Luther King Boulevard reconstruction project in Morgan City as part of the Gustav-Ike Disaster Recovery Program; a professional service agreement with Edmonson Associates on technical assistance services; a contract with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries on the Black Bear Conflict Management Program; a contract with the low bidder for the cleaning, waterproofing and associated work on the Blevins building in Franklin; the commencement of expropriation proceedings relative to property acquisition for the Morgan City Industrial Road project.
—Approved requests by Councilman Glen Hidalgo, District 4, to transfer $50,000 to Sub-Gravity Drainage District 1 of Gravity Drainage District 2 toward purchase of a new pump at Cannata’s Pumping Station and $20,000 to Recreation District 3 for purchase of security cameras and installation at Central Park Facility, both from the Wards 5 and 8 three-tenths percent sales tax fund.
—Referred requests from Community Action Agency for $30,000 toward the purchase of two pieces of property and houses on Willow Street in Franklin to provide housing opportunities; and by the Morgan City Police Reserve for $5,000 toward the purchase of ballistic vests, portable radios, high visibility traffic vests and insurance coverage to finance committee.
—Appointed Joseph A. Tabb to the West St. Mary Port Board of Commissioners.