Donaldsonville Mayor's Youth Advisory Council, Juneteenth Festival queens highlight City Council meeting

Michael Tortorich
Donaldsonville Mayor Leroy Sullivan Sr. conducts a swearing-in ceremony for the 2019-2020 Donaldsonville Mayor's Youth Advisory Council Commissioners during the City Council meeting Tuesday, Aug. 13.

The Donaldsonville City Council welcomed the 2019-2020 Mayor's Youth Advisory Council Commissioners and the 2019 Donaldsonville Juneteenth Festival royalty during the Aug. 13 meeting at City Hall.

Mayor Leroy Sullivan Sr. held a swearing-in ceremony for the MYAC, which is in its sixth year following a dormant period.

MYAC Director Tamiko Francis Garrison said ten Commissioners are returning this school year, along with one new member. High school students from both Donaldsonville High School and Ascension Catholic High School are eligible to serve on the Council. Though ACHS students have served in past years, no student applied this term.

In previous years, the MYAC had taken educational and service trips, including notably to Washington, D.C.

Also, the 2019 Donaldsonville Juneteenth Festival queens and guest royalty paid a visit to the City Council.

Garrison, who serves as an organizer of the annual festival, introduced the queens. 

In other matters before the Council Tuesday:

- Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office Captain Darryl Smith addressed the concern of Council members regarding turn lanes on Marchand Drive, a main throughway in the city.

Some motorists have been observed using turn lanes as travel lanes, without turning. 

Smith confirmed the turn lanes are for turning only. He advised informing drivers of this fact would be ideal prior to bringing enforcement.

- Donaldsonville Fire Chief James MacDonald reported on the new fire station under construction along Marchand Drive.

He said rain has caused some delays, but the work crew was able to pour the driveway.

MacDonald anticipates a final punch-list will be compiled some time in the middle of September. Any remaining work would wrap up toward the end of the year.

- Public Works Supervisor Spencer Harvey told the Council that overtime hours may be necessary to address mowing around the city.

Harvey said the crew may need evening and weekend hours to catch up on the briskly-growing grass.

- The Council authorized the purchase of an ATLV 4300 diesel ride-on vacuum sweeper. 

The sweeper will be purchased through a state contract at a cost of $37,963.78.

- Back to School Refresher Program volunteer organizer Robyn Penn Delaney reported on the successful week the program had recently.

She said more than 35 volunteers helped this year. The program received several generous donations to bolster the budget provided by the city.

"I want to commend Mrs. Robyn, the volunteers, and the city workers on a job well done," Mayor Sullivan said.

Last year, the program came in under its budget of $6,000 dollars. Though this year's total was in the red slightly, the Council members agreed to pick up roughly $70 each on the tab.

The Council then voted unanimously to boost the program's budget to $7,000 for next year.