Help on the way for Vinton T-ball fields

Published 7:24 am Wednesday, April 5, 2023

Vinton T-ball fields were literally losing ground, fast. Now, with the approval of $265,000 from the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury, which will cover a third of the cost, work can begin to relocate the erosion-causing lateral turn. The remaining cost is being funded by the Community Center and Playground District No. Three of Ward Seven and the Consolidated Gravity Drainage District No. One. A landowner donated the land needed to make the changes.

Bryan Beam, Parish Administrator applauded the effort of Danny Paladino, Ward 7 Recreation for spearheading the collaboration.

Other entities receiving approval for funding from the Calcasieu Parish Police Jury at the Tuesday monthly meeting include $40,000 to Chennault International Airport for costs associated with the 2023 Airshow to be held in May; $70,000 to West Calcasieu Cameron Hospital to help pay for a new air handler unit; $30,769 to the City of Westlake for the purchase of computer stations for Westlake Police Department vehicles; and $100,000 to Ward Five Fire Protection District No. One in Starks to help with the cost of the purchase and installation of a communication tower.

Tuesday marked the first of approximately 85 purchases by the CPPJ of properties with repeated flood claims through funding received from the FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Program to mitigate future repetitive loss claims.

Jennifer Cobian, CPPJ grants director said residents were notified of this grant opportunity/ buy-out program not only through word of mouth and social media, but also through letters from the parish and going to the owners’ of properties that qualified. In addition to repetitive flood claims, FEMA’s buyout looked at a cost and benefits analysis, severity of flooding and took into consideration the physical and financial needs of owners.

The recommendation to accept the $536,884 bid of Hackley Enterprises for the Intracoastal Park Hurricane Repair Project was approved. Juror Judd Bares, District 12 commended Dean Kelly, Director of Facility Management for his efforts to get the project to this point.

The meeting adjourned with an approval of official condolences to be forwarded to the families of the late Mary Leva “Vee” McNabb and “Buddy Russ” Conrad.

Tony Tramonte, District 15, called Vee’s Donuts “a staple” and described her as a sweet lady who served generations of donut lovers and raised some wonderful children. Joe Andrepont, District 13 echoed those sentiments and remembered how Ms. Vee would go out of her way to make sure he received the freshest donuts. Judd Bares described McNabb as a “little bitty thing with a big personality.” He said KPLC personality John Bridges wanted to stop there at 4:30 one morning and when Bares marveled that she would be working that early in the morning alone, he was told she had a 357 magnum under the counter.

Bares said about Conrad, “God rest his soul; he’s a guy who could make anything happen – and that he did.”