Letter: Officials need to protect bayou from trash, debris

Along Bayou Manchac in East Baton Rouge Parish, there are two areas of materials being dumped in the bayou. One is construction debris, and the other broken cement. After six months and 11 calls to DEQ, nothing has been done to clean this up. I called the East Baton Rouge Parish Department of Public Works, and an investigator came out and stated DPW is not in enforcement. However, he contacted the Department of Environmental Quality, and, finally, an investigator from the criminal division came out stating he could not locate the land owner, and on the cement matter, DEQ does not handle cement.

Who is the enforcer? It appears all one has to do is go to the courthouse, and the landowner is listed on the tax rolls with a valid address.

Also, people fishing at the locks on Alligator Bayou and Frog Bayou leave their trash on the bayou bank as though they are royalty and someone should clean up behind them. The wind and high water carry the trash off in the bayou. The Bayou Manchac and Bayou Fountain Cleanup Coalition attempts to clean up their mess, but it will be ongoing unless the local sheriff’s departments take action. (On this matter, it is the responsibility of Iberville and Ascension parishes’ sheriff’s offices to get involved.)

This bayou was designated a historical bayou some years ago but appears to be in name only. What good is this designation if no one with authority is willing to protect it?

C.R. Haydel

retired drilling foreman

St. Gabriel