MORGAN CITY — Work to upgrade the city’s zoning ordinances and land use plans have begun and are expected to be complete with revised ordinances adopted by March.
Matthew Bucchin, senior associate with Kendig Keast Collaborative, presented the mayor and council with a timeline of how the process will work during Tuesday’s council meeting. The firm has been hired to conduct the work and will be working with Lucien Cutrera, who has consulted with the city on past projects.
The plan is to establish long-term sustainability by first looking at existing conditions and problems, and how the city and residents want to solve those problems.
The initial work will be brought before both the Planning and Zoning Commission and City Council for approval.
Next, the city’s codes will be examined to see where they can be improved.
These updated codes also will be brought before the Planning and Zoning Commission, and the mayor and council for approval.
“The first part is to figure out where we’re going, and the second part is to tie those future plans with the codes,” Bucchin said.
Then, the drafting of regulation, which will involve opportunities for stakeholder interviews, will be held. The plan will be available at www.cityofmc.com for public comment and will be brought before the planning and zoning commission and city council, who will host a joint public hearing.
As of now, Bucchin said Kendig Keast has been taking photos of the area and by the end of August, they will be meeting for two days of interviews with planning and zoning commission members to gather more data about the major issues and biggest concerns.
Among the initial goals of the project are to implement standards for accessory buildings and making sure the authorities of the boards and commissions are clearly defined and understandable for the community as well as for those who come to do business from other areas.
By October, Bucchin said he hoped the land use development plan would be ready to be presented.
Morgan City Mayor Tim Matte encouraged residents and members of the city’s various committees to partake as much as possible in this upgrade as all meetings will be open to the public.
“This is your community,” he said. “It’s your opportunity to help shape it for the future, have it look like you want it to look like, have it operate like you want it to operate.”
The study will cost $128,000 and will be funded entirely through Community Development Block Grant monies.
Kendig Keast is doing this same work for St. Mary Parish to target the parish’s unincorporated areas.
In other news, the council:
—Authorized Matte to enter a cooperative endeavor agreement with the State of Louisiana for the construction of three to four two-bedroom cabins at Lake End Parkway.
—Learned from Finance Director Deborah Garber that the city had favorable variances in its General and Ancillary, and Sanitation and Sewer funds, and an unfavorable variance in its Utility fund.
—Authorized the city to advertise for bids for a 108-crypt mausoleum.
—Held the first reading of its millage rates for the 2011 tax year as well as its adjusted millage rates. While the rates were adopted last month, there was an error in the advertisement in The Daily Review, the city’s official journal, meaning city leaders had to readvertise.
—Approved Finance Committee recommendations to reallocate $1,870 from the Swamp Gardens budget to replace fencing at the city’s Barnyard and Petting Zoo that was torn down to make room for the St. Mary Parish Chamber of Commerce office building. The council also approved the Electric Department’s request to receive formal bids on a new “bucket” truck.
—Declared flood protection baskets at Lake End Park, La. 70 at Fig Street and under the elevated U.S. 90 at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard as surplus.
—Approved a resolution of support for the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estu-ary Program to hold its 15th annual La Fête d’Ecologie on Sept. 24 at Lake End Park.
—Learned from Matte in his Louisiana Energy and Power Authority report that lease negotiations are under way for the new power plant.
—Granted a Class “A” Liquor & Beer permit to Lisa Daigle of Catfish Corner LLC at 601 Railroad Ave.
—Agreed to allow Calvary Christian Fellowship Church, in association with God of a Second Chance Ministries and Hallelujah Square, to host a Youth Teen Festival under the E.J. “Lionel” Grizzaffi Bridge between Federal Avenue and Fourth Street on Aug. 6.
—Expressed no objections for an event dubbed “Hoodstock” to be held in September south of the Burlington-Northern Santa Fe Railroad tracks on Third Street be-tween Barrow and Adams streets. The event will feature gospel music, guest speakers from the community and activities for children, among other activities.