Parking issue of 18-wheeler heard by parish council

A LaGrange-Robicheaux Road resident sought help from the St. Mary Parish Council Wednesday to continue being allowed to park an 18-wheel tractor/trailer rig at her residence.

Darlene Theriot addressed the council in behalf of her husband, Winnfield Theriot who was working out of town.

She said they have been parking the truck at the residence for 11 years and the trailer for the past four years after it was vandalized while parked at a local truck stop. Those damages and the loss of the load amounted to about $7,500, she said.

After that they began to make improvements on their property to be able to park the trailer at home.

“Did y’all see the picture of my driveway?” she asked. “It’s 200 foot long and the truck is not parked on the side,” but in the back out of sight.

She added that a petition they passed around was signed in favor by 90 percent of their neighbors to allow the truck to be parked at the residence. Two of them, Debi Lauret and Adam Meche Sr., spoke in her behalf.

“Please adjust this ordinance so this man can make a living,” Lauret said. “It’s his livelihood,” Meche added.

“We’ve been doing it for 11 years, and all of a sudden we get ticketed,” she said. The ticket was issued by the St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s Office for “off truck route.”

Councilman David Hanagriff of Centerville said the ordinance on truck routes allows for travel to and from one’s domicile. However, he said there is a problem with using LaGrange-Robicheaux Road due to the load capacity which he said was set by a 1993 ordinance 8 tons or 16,000 pounds.

He added that he has been unable to determine why it was rated at 8 tons, and that a bridge on the road is rated at 44 tons.

Theriot said her husband’s truck and rig weighs 34,760 pounds and is always empty when in residence. Other vehicles such as garbage trucks, utility service vehicles and trucks traveling to and from the Yokely pump station are heavier, she said.

Council Chairman Steve Bierhorst of Patterson said he drove down the road prior to the meeting and did not see any noticeable damage that may have been caused by Theriot’s rig or other heavy vehicles.

Parish Chief Administrative Officer Henry “Bo” LaGrange said the load capacity could be determined by looking back at designs from when the roadway was overlaid. He suggested having Miller Engineers do that research.

Theriot was told she will have to wait until it is determined what weight the road was designed to hold.

“If it’s 8 tons, it’s 8 tons,” Hanagriff said.

Legal counsel Vincent Borne said the District Attorney’s Office is apprised of the citation and will monitor it through the legal process for possible dismissal if found to be erroneous.

In other business the council:

—Adopted an ordinance authorizing a right-of-way agreement with St. Mary Holdings LLC.

—Introduced ordinances on the 2012 fiscal year budget and five-year capital outlay plan.

—Passed resolutions authorizing execution of contracts with Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries relative to the Bear Conflict Management Program, and with BidSync on an automated, online competitive solicitation system.

—Passed resolutions requesting capital outlay funding from the state for reconstruction of Charenton Beach Road from La. 87 to the West Atchafalaya Basin Protection Levee; renovation and conversion of the existing tourist building to a parish conference center; installation of culverts and associated infrastructure at Middle Road in Bayou Vista for Sub-Gravity Drainage District 1 of Drainage District 2; industrial road construction from Baker Hughes to Port Road in Morgan City; infrastructure improvements at the Charenton Canal Industrial Park; infrastructure improvements at Kemper Williams Park in Patterson, Bring Back the Neighborhood Park in Four Corners, St. Joseph Park in Franklin, Sorrell Park and Centerville Park; drainage system improvements for Consolidated Drainage District 2; improvements at Bayou Vista Civic Center for Recreation District 3; and construction of an administrative and activity center for St. Mary Association for Retarded Children in Centerville.

—Referred funding requests from ARC of St. Mary, $15,000; the Assessor’s Office, $18,327; and the Coroner’s Office to finance committee.

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