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Washington Parish Reservoir District Lawsuit filed

Residents Allege wrong doing

In Washington Parish on Mar 3, 2005 the Miley Law Firm of Baton Rouge who represents two residents of the Oak Grove Community have filed a Lawsuit against the Washington Parish Reservoir District. The District is a political subdivision that can sue or be sued, and a public body as defined by La R.S. 42:4.2. Petitioners allege that the Commission is in violation of the open meeting law also know as the sunshine law.

At the Economic Development Foundation on Jan 5, 2005 a public meeting was held with Denmon Engineering, and the District’s consultant present. Michael L. Thompson former Mayor of Delhi is consultant for Washington and Allen Parish Reservoir Districts.
Thompson’s misconception is that only the Corp of Engineers is responsible for receiving comments and site selection. There was controversy in Allen Parish, and rumor is the District Attorney was required to inform that Commission about correct procedure.

The Lake Commission announced, “Residents attending may not speak as deadline for comments was extended, but we haven’t received any, and only Scientific Expert facts will be considered”. Residents sent registered letters that was refused up to 9 times.

Petitioners allege that no opportunity was allowed for public comment and, in fact, Public comment and discussion was specifically denied in violation of La R.S. 42:5(D).
Petitioners have reason to believe and therefore allege the District did not post a copy of  La R.S. 42:4.1-13, all as required by La R.S. 42:4.1(B), nor was notice of the meeting provided by La R.S. 42:7.

Petitioners desire and request that the Honorable Court declare all actions and votes taken by the District be void that a Declaratory Judgment be rendered declaring the District subject to the provisions of La R.S. 42:1-13 and prohibit further violations and petitioners be awarded reasonable attorney fees and all costs of the proceedings.

Petitioners request a copy of written public notices, minutes of the meeting, and any audio or video recording of the meeting. Petitioners also request that Huey Long Pierce, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners of the District admit or deny that he informed persons attending the meeting that the Commission was not holding a public hearing since that was the responsibility of the Corps of Engineers.

The residents say, the Commission actions are you can come and listen while we take your homes and Desecrate your cemeteries, but you can’t say anything.