City Council Minutes - May 25, 2021

Monroe City Council Legal and Regular Session
May 25, 2021 6:00 p.m.
City Council Chambers-City Hall
MINUTES

 

There was a legal and regular session of the City Council of the City of Monroe, Louisiana held this date, May 25, 2021 at the Council's regular meeting place, 400 Lea Joyner Memorial Expressway, City Council Chambers/City Hall Building, Monroe, Louisiana.    

 

The Honorable Douglas Harvey, Chairman, called the meeting to order.

 

The roll call was done by Ms. Carolus Riley, Council Clerk.

 

Council members present for roll call: Mr. Douglas Harvey, Mrs. Gretchen Ezernack, Ms. Juanita Woods,

Mr. Carday Marshall Sr., Mrs. Kema Dawson.

 

Council member (s) absent: NONE.

 

Chairman Harvey declared a quorum. 

 

The Invocation was done by Councilman Marshall’s designee, Rev. Moses Perkins (Pastor of Redemption Church) and the Pledge of Allegiance was led by Councilman Marshall.    

 

COMMUNICATIONS & SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENTS:                       

                 

          1. Mr. Harvey welcomed and thanked everyone for attending tonight’s Council meeting.

 

          2. Mrs. Ezernack welcomed and thanked everyone for attending tonight’s meeting; she congratulated Sue           Nicholson on her retirement from Monroe Chamber of Commerce and thanked her for her service to the City of           Monroe and also her work on the Kansas Lane Connector for years and other projects that have been funded and           others that waiting on funding.

 

          3. Ms. Woods welcomed all for being present as well as those watching on social media. She thanked Ms.           Nicholson for her service.  She thanked those who participated in the District 3 cleanup; those persons thanked           were Mrs. Ezernack, G.B. Cooley’s staff and clients, Ouachita Green, SEDD, Rev. Marty Campbell, Community           Affairs Department including Mr. Seegers, Ms. Talley, and Mr. Wright. She thanked the Mayor for calling her and    letting her no that he was not going to be in attendance due to a family event.  She expressed her condolences to the     family of Mr. Ronald Greene; happy to see that the David Harris case has been transferred to the State Police.

          Dr. Francis Staten of Grambling State University spoke about a project being implemented in District 3; the project           is Adopt a Street, one block at a time and District 3 is partnering with Grambling State University.

 

          4. Mr. Marshall welcomed everyone for being present and those watching along on social media.  He announced           Covid vaccination campaign and on tomorrow will be at Emily P. Robinson and Henrietta Johnson between the           hours of 11am-7pm.  A health and wellness expo scheduled for June 5 at Monroe Civic Center sponsored by Ms.           Katrina Branson and the event is free.  The boy scouts are looking for volunteers and contact Mr. Robert (Bob)           D’Avignon Director of Boys Scouts, local region. He is looking to expand the program to Districts 3,4,5. He can           be reached at 318-325-4634. The Juneteenth parade is scheduled for June 19th, and it will start at Wossman High           School and end at Charles Johnson Park where there will be a celebration at the park from 11am-5pm.  He thanked         everyone for their service and appreciate all the departments, Stacey Rowell in Administration for all the hours of         work.

 

          5. Mrs. Dawson welcomed each one present.  She announced the City will be having summer programs and they           are posted on her Facebook page and the City of Monroe’s Facebook page.  The City of Monroe will also be having           a Monroe academy league.

 

Upon a motion of Mr. Marshall and a second by Mrs. Ezernack, the minutes of the Legal and Regular session of  May 11, 2021, were unanimously approved. (There were no public comments).

 

PRESENTATION: 6pm    Karen Cupit, Louisiana Watershed Initiative Region 3 Watershed Coordinator. A PowerPoint presentation on the watershed initiative was presented by Ms.  Karen Cupit and Ms. Lisa Richardson, the Region 3 Flood plain manager. 

 

          PUBLIC HEARINGS:       NONE.

        

 

 

 

PROPOSED CONDEMNATIONS:      Public Comment:

 

1.  4009 Elm Street (D3) (Curatorships - Johnnie Gospel, Sharalyn Nicole Gospel; non-curator –

OPPJ, Brown & Son Realty, LLC)  Upon a motion by Ms. Woods, second by Mrs. Ezernack and unanimously approved for property owner to be given 30 days or June 26, 2021, in which to bring the structure into compliance with the code or demolish the structure and clean the lot.  (There were no public comments).

 

Comments: PowerPoint slides of  pictorial evidence on the current state of the property and discussion on the property’s condition were presented by PUD Director, Ellen Hill. 

 

2.  216 Moore Avenue (D4) (Curatorships - Danny Lenard, Tommy Lenard; non-curator – OPPJ  Upon a motion by Mr. Marshall, second by Mrs. Dawson and unanimously approved for property owner to be given 30 days or June 26, 2021, in which to bring the structure into compliance with the code or demolish the structure and clean the lot.  (There were no public comments).

 

Comments:   PowerPoint slides of  pictorial evidence on the current state of the property and discussion on the property’s condition were presented by PUD Director, Ellen Hill.

 

3.  1715 Grammont (D3) (Curatorships - JD Peevy Lodge #227 Prinehall Affiliated Southern

Jurisdiction; JD Peevy Lodge #227)   Upon a motion by Ms. Woods, second by Mrs. Ezernack and unanimously approved for property owner to be given 30 days or June 26, 2021, in which to bring the structure into compliance with the code or demolish the structure and clean the lot.  (There were no public comments).  

 

Comments: PowerPoint slides of  pictorial evidence on the current state of the property and discussion on the property’s condition were presented by Code Enforcement officer, Stacy Newbill.

Ms. Woods commented the property was in her district and it is an eyesore and motioned the property to be condemned.

 

4.  1309 Olive (D4) (Curatorships - Daaiyah Wooten, Evangeline Carter Lewis, Angela Carter

Ziegler; non-curator Louis Mattox, et al, OPPJ)  Upon a motion by Mr. Marshall, second by Mrs. Dawson and unanimously approved for property owner to be given 60 days or July 26, 2021, in which to bring the structure into compliance with the code or demolish the structure and clean the lot.  (There were no public comments).

 

Comments: PowerPoint slides of  pictorial evidence of the current state of the property and discussion on the property’s condition were presented by Code Enforcement officer, Stacy Newbill.

Discussions were made about the district location of the property; it was determined that the property was located in District 4 and not District 2 as originally listed.

 

     ACCEPTANCE OR REJECTION OF BIDS:       Public Comment   None.

 

          RESOLUTIONS AND MINUTE ENTRIES:

      

 1. Council:           Public Comment:

 

(a) Upon a motion by Mr. Harvey, second by Mrs. Ezernack and unanimously approved to Adopt Resolution No. 7978, approving the appointment of Karl Dhaliwal to the board for the Southside Economic Development District (SEDD) and further providing with respect thereto. (Chamber)  (There were no public comments).

Comments:  Mrs. Ezernack inquired about the paperwork, and the replacing of Gladys Smith Coward, but the resolution is Mr. Mitchell; Mrs. Sturdivant said Mr. Mitchell filled Mrs. Coward’s position and he has since then moved out of state, his appointment was in December and is not aware if  he ever attended a meeting. 

 

ADD-ON:  Upon a motion by Ms. Woods, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to add to the agenda to Adopt a Resolution granting an exception to Bishop Fighting Promotions (MMA Fights) pursuant to Monroe City Code Sec. 12-231 D (Open Container Ordinance), and further providing with respect thereto. (There were no public comments).

 

 

 

Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Adopt Resolution No. 7979,  granting an exception to Bishop Fighting Promotions (MMA Fights) pursuant to Monroe City Code Sec. 12-231 D (Open Container Ordinance), and further providing with respect thereto. (There were no public comments).

 

          2. Department of Administration:

    Public Comment:

    None.

 

3. Department of Planning & Urban Development: 

              Public Comment:

    None.

4. Legal Department:

    Public Comment:

    None.

 

          5. Mayor’s Office:

              Public Comment:

 

(a) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Mrs. Dawson and unanimously approved to Adopt Resolution No. 7980, approving and authorizing an agreement for local services by and between the City of Monroe and the Monroe Chamber of Commerce and further providing with respect thereto. (There were no public comments).

 

6. Department of Public Works:

    Public Comment:

    None.

 

7. Department of Community Affairs:

    Public Comment:

    None.     

 

8.  Police Department:   

               Public Comment:

     None.

 

          9.  Fire Department:

     Public Comment:

     None.   

          10. Engineering Services:

               Public Comment:

 

(a) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Adopt Resolution No. 7981, accepting the base bid of W.L. Bass Construction, Inc., in the amount $73,950.00, for the Park Avenue at Entergy Substation Drainage Project, and further authorizing an authorized city representative, to enter into and execute a contract for said work.  (There were no public comments).

 

(b) Upon a motion by Mrs. Dawson, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Adopt Resolution No. 7982, authorizing an authorized city representative to advertise for bids on the Forsythe Boat Ramp and Parking Lot Improvements Project. The estimated cost of this project is $406,388.95.  The DBE Goal is 8.52% and source of funds Capital Infrastructure Sales Tax Revenue Funds.  (There were no public comments).

 

(c) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to remove from the agenda to Adopt a Resolution authorizing an authorized city representative, to enter into and execute a Professional Services Agreement with Arcadis U.S., Inc., to provide engineering and other professional services for the Texas Standifer Gravity Sanitary Sewer Improvements Project and further providing with respect thereto.

(There were no public comments).

 

 

(d) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Mrs. Dawson and unanimously approved to Adopt Resolution No. 7983, authorizing an authorized city representative, to enter into and execute a Contract with Huval, to provide Professional Services for bridge inspections and further providing with respect thereto.  (There were no public comments).

 

BREAK IF NEEDED:

 

          INTRODUCTION OF RESOLUTIONS & ORDINANCES:

          Public Comment:

 

      (a) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Ms. Woods and unanimously approved to Introduce an       Ordinance authorizing issuance, sale and delivery of Sales Tax Revenue Refunding Bonds, Series 2021, of the       City of Monroe, State of Louisiana, all in the manner provided for by Title 39 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes       of 1950, as amended, and other constitutional and statutory authority supplemental thereto; and   providing for       other matters in connection therewith. (Admin.)  

 

      Comments:  Attorney Bill Boles and Mr. Nnamdi Thompson explained the agenda ordinance item.

 

      RESOLUTIONS AND ORDINANCES FOR SECOND READING AND FINAL ADOPTION AND       SUBJECT TO PUBLIC HEARING:

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing:   Chairman Harvey opened the public hearing, and seeing        no one come forward, Chairman Harvey closed the hearing.

     

      (a) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Finally Adopt        Ordinance No. 12,056, adopting the Authorized Millage Rate(s) and providing for the Levying of Special       and General Taxes for the City of Monroe for the year 2021. (Admin.)  (There were no public comments).

      Comments:  Mrs. Ezernack wanted the public to know that this was the same rates from last year, no changes.

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing:   None.

 

      (b) Upon a motion by Ms. Woods, second by Mrs. Ezernack and unanimously approved to table item to Finally       Adopt an Ordinance amending Chapter 10.5 Section 23 of the Monroe City Code Entitled “Electronic Video       Bingo Machines” and further providing with respect thereto. (Woods)  (There were no public comments).

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing:  Chairman Harvey opened the public hearing, and seeing       no one come forward, Chairman Harvey closed the hearing.

 

      (c) Upon a motion by Ms. Woods, second by Mrs. Ezernack and unanimously approved to Finally Adopt        Ordinance No. 12,057, authorizing the City of Monroe to take corporeal possession of the property       described below and sell to Charles Wilson, Jr. all rights, title, and interest that the City may have acquired to the Lot 4, Square 3, Edwards Addition, Ouachita Parish, 2806 Coolidge St., District 3, Monroe, La, by Adjudication       at Tax Sale dated July 1, 2011, and further with respect thereto. (Legal)  (There were no public comments).

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing: Chairman Harvey opened the public hearing, and seeing         no one come forward, Chairman Harvey closed the hearing.

 

      (d) Upon a motion by Ms. Woods, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Finally Adopt        Ordinance No. 12,058, authorizing the City of Monroe to take corporeal possession of the property       described below and sell to Shirley Dunn all rights, title, and interest that the City may have acquired to the Lot       14, Square 95, D. A. Breard Sr.’s Addition, Ouachita Parish, 1515 Breard St., District 3, Monroe, La, by       Adjudication at Tax Sale dated August 1, 2014, and further with respect thereto. (Legal) (There were no public       comments).

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing:  Chairman Harvey opened the public hearing, and seeing       no one come forward, Chairman Harvey closed the hearing.

 

      (e) Upon a motion by Mrs. Ezernack, second by Ms. Woods and unanimously approved to Finally Adopt        Ordinance No. 12,059, adopting and amending the Zoning Map for the City of Monroe, Louisiana to rezone       a ±9-acre tract of land located in Ouachita Parish from B-3, General Business/Commercial to B-1,          

 

      Neighborhood Mixed Use District in order for the applicant to be able to develop the area with residential lots       and a commercial strip - 301 Plum Street (All of Square 27 and Square 28 of Ouachita Mills Second Addition)       – APPLICANT: Cedrick Hemphill - (P&Z)  (There were no public comments).

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing:  Chairman Harvey opened the public hearing, and seeing       no one come forward, Chairman Harvey closed the hearing.

 

      (f) Upon a motion by Mrs. Dawson, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Finally Adopt        Ordinance No. 12,060, contracting the boundaries of the City of Monroe, Louisiana, providing for the       recordation of the entire boundary as amended: establishing the effective date thereof, and providing further with           respect thereto – Applicant – City of Monroe. (P&Z)  (There were no public comments).

 

      Open Public Hearing/Public Comment/Close Hearing:  Chairman Harvey opened the public hearing, and seeing       no one come forward, Chairman Harvey closed the hearing.

 

      (g) Upon a motion by Mrs. Dawson, second by Mr. Marshall and unanimously approved to Finally Adopt        Ordinance No. 12,061, authorizing the City of Monroe to acquire full ownership interest of the property       described as Lot 12, Sq. 4 Maupins Locks & Dams Addn, and south 45 ft on Nichols St., bearing municipal       address 3514 Lee Ave., Monroe, La, by Adjudication at Tax Sale dated June 24, 2015, and further with respect       thereto. (Legal) (There were no public comments).

 

 

          CITIZENS PARTICIPATION:

 

1.  Mr. Michael Gibson spoke regarding the deaths that have occurred while in custody of Monroe Police Department and the deaths of Alphonso Brown, Earl Grant, and David Harris.

 

2.  Mr. Verbon Muhammad spoke regarding turning the case of Mr. David Harris over to the State Police and it was done.  He asked Council to adopt a resolution regarding an in custody death by the Monroe Police Department that the case shall be turned over to the State Police.

 

There being no further business to come before the Council, the meeting was adjourned at 7:04 p.m., upon a  motion of Mrs. Ezernack and seconded by Mrs. Dawson.  (There were no public comments).

 

 

Mr. Douglas Harvey

Council Chairman

 

Ms. Carolus S. Riley

Council Clerk

 

Ms. Jacqueline Benjamin

Council Secretary

 

*For extended details on the Council meeting please call the Council Clerk, Monday-Friday at 329-2252; also, a recording of the minutes can be sent via email to you.3.5.3226