Crawford Electric zoning issue heads back to Gonzales council

A property owner plans to ask the Gonzales City Council on Monday night to reconsider a rezoning request for a site that’s become a symbol for a growing divide in the council over how to deal with zoning changes.

At issue is a 22-acre tract on La. 44, part of which local developer Jimmy Boyce III sought to be rezoned as the future site for a Gonzales location of a national electrical supply company, Crawford Electric.

Boyce requested a zoning change for the property, owned by the PriceCo company, from C-1 retail to C-2 retail and wholesale.

The request received strong support from local civic and business leaders who seem increasingly frustrated by some council members’ resistance to changes from C-1 retail zoning.

The rezoning request at first seemed to have been approved at the City Council’s last meeting, on Feb. 24, but that vote was later overturned and found invalid because there wasn’t a true majority — one of the five council members had recused himself and another one had abstained from voting.

At Monday night’s meeting, a representative of the property owner, PriceCo, a company of the Price LeBlanc family, will ask the council to reconsider the matter, said Mayor Barney Arceneaux.

“It’s strictly a rehearing ... they felt like there wasn’t a full vote” the first time, Arceneaux said.

The rezoning request remains the same, for a change from C-1 to C-2, and so can be brought to the council for reconsideration within a six-month period from the original request, said City Attorney Ryland Percy.

On Tuesday, the heads of the Ascension Chamber of Commerce sent a letter to the mayor, blasting the council’s failure to move on the rezoning request and bring a new business in to the city.