Details emerge about new 120 bed nursing home

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Details are emerging about a 120-room nursing home to be built at 781 La. Hwy. 494, east of Freedom Life Church. At the City Council meeting Monday, there was an ordinance introduced citing a cooperative endeavor agreement between the City and Commcare Management Corp. for a cost sharing agreement for installation of utility infrastructure including electric, water and sewer. The ordinance was introduced at the meeting and will be voted on at the council’s May 24 meeting.

The City’s cost share amount will be $185,000 according to the City’s tentative plan for spending American Rescue Plan 2021 funds. The nursing home will be built on 10 acres purchased from Braxton Keyser LLC and annexed by the City in March. It will have 120 private rooms with private baths that will be built in four pods in a 70,000 square foot complex. The construction costs will be approximately $15.9 million with construction to start in June. There will be approximately 110 employees.

Another ordinance introduced is intended to help some businesses affected by COVID-19 reopen.

The ordinance will let businesses that sell alcohol for on-premise consumption that were closed during the pandemic for 90 days, that have the B-A alcohol zoning to reapply for zoning if they were closed for 90 days or more. Councilman Dale Nielsen said the change to the ordinance is meant to be business-friendly and get businesses up and running again.

Director of Planning and Zoning Shontrell Roque said the ordinance should not be interpreted as applying to new businesses that open in buildings that previously were zoned for alcohol consumption but closed for 90 days for reasons other than for the pandemic. Any business that has alcohol consumption on premises must still go through the planning and zoning process.

Roque recommended seven buildings for condemnation. They are:

(Photos from Google maps)

•312 Sanford owned by Ethel McHenry

312 Sanford St.

•1538 Berry and 709 Kerry, owned by Doffer and Delores Benjamin

1538 Berry
709 Kerry

•827 Jordan owned by Robert Murphy, Grant Shields, et al

827 Jordan

•815 Jordan, owned by Latoya Sawyer

815 Jordan

•722 Sabine Alley and 1332 Berry, owned by Parish Government

722 Sabine Alley
1332 Berry

The Parish Government Director of Planning and Zoning David Kees said the two buildings on the list owned by Parish Government were adjudicated to the Parish for failure to pay property taxes. The Sheriff’s office determines whether a property gets adjudicated to the Parish or the City in one of two ways. The first is that the resident paid the City’s property taxes, but not Parish taxes, and the property is adjudicated to the Parish. If the Parish taxes were paid but not the City’s, the property would be adjudicated to the City.

The second is determined through the chronology of the attempted sales of the property once the property taxes become delinquent. For instance, these two properties were likely put up for auction on behalf of both the Parish and the City for nonpayment of both entities’ taxes, but failed to attract any buyers. If the auction on behalf of the Parish was first, then the property is adjudicated to the Parish, and vice versa. Even though these two properties were adjudicated to the Parish, they reside inside the City’s jurisdiction for demolition and property upkeep.

The Parish does not have the manpower or financial resources to maintain every property adjudicated and the City seems to be within their right to destroy the buildings in accordance with their ordinances.

Another ordinance introduced authorizes the City to convey surplus property to Fire District #10. That property includes nine self-contained breathing apparatuses.

The council also took the following action:

•Authorized franchise for Cane River Paddle & Pedal Sports

•Finalized refinancing of revenue bonds

•Adopted the budget for Fiscal Year June 1, 2021-May 31, 2022

•Authorized purchasing through LaMATS, an arm of Louisiana Municipal Association

•Reappointed Henry Kinberger and Johnny Broussard to the Fire and Police Civil Service Board