Planning and Zoning Committee attend first meeting

Charlotte Guedry
Six of the seven members of the new Planning and Zoning Committee are sworn in. From left: Jackie Callendar, Joshua Ory, Paul Nizzo, Donald Songy, Gasper Chifici, and Morrie Bishop. Robert Burgess was unable to attend due to a family emergency.

The new, seven member Planning and Zoning Committee had their first meeting last night at the Ascension Parish Courthouse in Gonzales.

Six of the seven members were in attendance, and were sworn in as planning commissioners by Attorney Lindsey Manda, in the first of two oaths the group will have to take. They will meet again to be sworn in for the zoning portion of their new roles.

Robert Burgess was unable to attend due to a family emergency, which led to a request made by Donald Songy that they postpone the electing of Committe Chairman, as the group was hoping to nominate Burgess. Songy was then elected to serve as Vice Chairman, and led the night's meeting due to the absence of a Chair.

Although the first meeting of the newly appointed group, the meeting seemed to go without a hitch, as decisions were made in the approval of the reduction of a servitude on the Calvin King property, and in the approval of a Chapel being constructed on the Bocage Plantation property. This decision will now go in front of the Ascension Parish Council for further approval.

David Patterson, owner of Land Source, spoke on behalf of a Prairieville Commercial Park, but the Committee was remiss to make any approval decisions, as they were concerned that the Ascension Parish Public Works office had a few concerns. This matter will come under reveiew again at a later date.

A few residents in attendance felt the meeting was handled professionally, and that courtesy was extended to all speakers. Questions were raised, however, regarding the behaviour of former Planning and Zoning Committee members and a current Parish Councilman snickering and making comments during discussions.