Scottlandville homeowners frustrated with buyout
BATON ROUGE- Reverend Dudley Theodore Jackson proudly mows his lawn once a week. It's something he's done for a very long time.
"I've been living here a long time, " he says. "I moved on Avenue F in 1975."
But he says he got a letter from East Baton Rouge Parish the other day saying they're buying his property, and more than forty other homes in University Place subdivision. It's a neighborhood of mostly retirees.
"It makes me feel bad, they're worked all their life to try to get a home paid for, you're to old. Now you got to move out," says Jackson.
The homes are located just feet from a sewage plant, and after years of complaints developers decided to plant trees to block the smell. They plan to buy out the nearby property in order to do so.
One man says he's worried about his parents having to move out.
"So if you're 67 years old, you've paid for your house. And they uproot you right now and you end up in another mortgage," he says. " So what if you get sick. Then you lost everything you have from a waste sewage plant? "
The Department of Public Works says they're not just cutting the residents a check. According to DPW the agency is providing agents to assist homeowners with the relocation process.
But some say that's just not enough.
"I just... I made this my home. And I'm too old to try to get another place," says Jackson.
DPW says there's no timetable for completing the buyout process.