News Around Ascension

Staff Writer
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
Gonzales Mayor Barney Arceneaux reads from a proclamation, highlighting the numerous organizations that Dr. Richard Joseph Caro (Caro Clinic) has been, and is a part of, including the Ascension Parish Medical Society, Southern Medical Society and the Louisiana Medical Society.

Mayoral proclamation gives Dr. Richard Joseph Caro his own day

GONZALES – On July 1, local dignitaries, along with family and friends of Dr. Richard Joseph Caro (Caro Clinic) gathered to recognize his achievements in celebration of his 40 years of independent practice in the Ascension community.

Gonzales Mayor Barney Arceneaux read from a proclamation, highlighting the numerous organizations that Dr. Caro has been, and is a part of, including the Ascension Parish Medical Society, Southern Medical Society and the Louisiana Medical Society.

“Richard has lived quite an extraordinary life,” Mayor Arceneaux said. “We’re honored to have him as a part of our Gonzales community, and always get a kick out the tales he brings back from his many travels. Congratulations to Richard and his supportive family for his many successes.”

Motorcycle Accident

DONALDSONVILLE – According to Louisiana State Police, a motorcyclist died in a single vehicle crash on La. 70 east of La. 3089 shortly after 10 p.m. on July 4. Identified as 38 year old Ron Clark of Baton Rouge, police reported that despite his wearing of a DOT approved safety helmet, Clark suffered serious injuries when his motorcycle began to drift across the left lane of La. 70 and ran off the roadway. Clark struck a highway sign and was ejected from his motorcycle. He was pronounced dead at Prevost Hospital. A toxicology test will be performed by the Ascension Parish Coroner’s Office. 

Mixed-use Community Plans Finalized

GONZALES – Southern Lifestyle Development, of Lafayette, have finalized the $8 million purchase of 345 acres. The company will build the upscale development, Conway Plantation, on La. 44, south of I-10 in Gonzales. Formerly the cattle ranch of the late Merritt P. Evans, the property now will be home to retail stores, apartments, homes, parks, lakes and a green civic space for free public events.

Master Plan Draft Made Public

GONZALES – The new master plan in development for the city addresses land use, street design and offers ways to attract higher-paying jobs and more affordable housing. Revealed at a public meeting on July 1, a representative of Baton Rouge’s Center for Planning Excellence, which is drafting the plan, said Gonzales has particular strengths and particular needs, including better traffic flow and more opportunities in jobs and housing. The more than 100-page master plan has specific items to address those and other areas for growth. The presentation of the draft is the latest step in a yearlong process.

‘Snake-bit’ roundabout project to be funded

PRAIRIEVILLE– State highway officials committed to foot the entire bill for a $1.96 million roundabout at Parker Road and La. 929, Ascension Parish President Tommy Martinez told the Parish Council on July 2. The parish was originally awarded a $500,000 safety grant from the state Department of Transportation and Development for the roundabout in 2009 as studies then showed the intersection had the worst crash rating of any intersection in the parish.

The Parish Council had agreed to cover the remaining cost of the future roundabout, but it goes over three large underground pipelines. Dealing with them, among other factors, ballooned the cost from nearly $700,000 to $2.4 million, parish officials said several years ago.

Martinez told the council in Donaldsonville he is thankful for DOTD’s assistance to allow the project to happen.

Man Found dead in Gonzales Parking Lot

GONZALES – A 26-year-old man was found dead in his car parked in the Lowe’s parking lot. Shortly after 8 a.m. on July 6, deputies responded to reports of a man slumped over in his vehicle. Investigators later identified the man as Kristopher Stevens of Livingston Parish, dead from what they believe to be an overdose.

According to Sheriff Wiley, Stevens was reported missing by family members on Sunday, and he was last seen on July 2. The Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office says an autopsy is pending to confirm the actual cause of death.