East Feliciana jurors adopt $5.6 million budget

The East Feliciana Police Jury approved a $5.6 million parishwide budget for 2014 on Tuesday, including its general and special fund revenues and expenditures.

Financial adviser McDuffie “Mac” Herrod told jurors at a public hearing prior to the vote that the “aim is for a balanced budget,” with expenditures matching projected revenues.

Herrod said there are sufficient funds to cover essential services and any emergency expenditure but no services are being expanded.

A breakdown shows a $2.076 million general fund budget; a $1.613 million budget for the road and bridge fund; $395,000 for the parish’s health unit; and $1.3 million for solid waste.

Herrod said the major sources of revenue for the general fund come from occupational license fees, severance taxes and general revenue sharing.

Occupational licenses are expected to bring in $170,000, severance taxes $339,000 and general revenue sharing, $60,000, Herrod said

Herrod reported that the parish governing body’s largest expenditure for 2014 is the cost of operating the parish jail at $275,000, a $51,000 increase over the 2013 budget for the jail.

The Sheriff’s Office staffs and operates the jail as well as provides a portion of the maintenance cost, Herrod noted.

In other business, jurors unanimously approved an ordinance, regulating the height of structures and use of the property in the area of the new Feliciana Airpark, which is located in the Jackson area on La. 68, near Dixon Correctional Institute.

The airpark consists of 164 acres divided into commercial and land use zones that include agriculture, wildlife habitat, and outdoor recreation and camping.

Jurors also learned that 17.75 miles of roads are being overlayed in a $2.3 million project. Parish manager and treasurer, John Rouchon reported that Coastal Bridge LLC of Baton Rouge is doing the work, which is expected to be completed in 15 working days, with one mile of asphalt completed in a day.

The roads in the project are Turner, McCoy Byrnes, Old Wilson-Norwood, Beechgrove, Gross and Nesom. Also included in the asphalt project are Castello Lane, Tommy James Lane and Williams Drive, which is located in Wilson.