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Could there be a development moratorium in EBR? Parish official wants to plan for "if"

2 years 11 months 3 weeks ago Friday, June 04 2021 Jun 4, 2021 June 04, 2021 5:30 PM June 04, 2021 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE – Seeing the fight over a proposed development moratorium in Ascension Parish, government officials in East Baton Rouge will start discussing whether such a proposal could be possible in EBR and, if so, how it would be implemented.

Councilwoman Chauna Banks will lead a discussion at an upcoming EBR Metro Council meeting to focus on whether a moratorium would be legal under the parish plan of government and if ever enacted, could it be focused on sections of the parish or petitioned by certain neighborhood HOAs instead of a blanket hold on development.

No moratorium has been proposed in East Baton Rouge through the council, though some homeowners have questioned if one should be set.

“There are so many questions,” Banks said in a conversation with WBRZ Friday.

The agenda item will be introduced at next week’s council meeting and discussed further later in the month.

Banks' formally calling for a "a discussion to address a process by which certain subdivisions may petition the EBR Planning and Zoning Commission to implement a moratorium on building activity." 

“I sympathize with people faced with this flooding dilemma,” Banks said, but is worried if anyone was successful in a parish-wide moratorium movement, it would hurt rural areas of the parish or North Baton Rouge where development already struggles.

“We feel we have a moratorium as it is [in some areas of EBR],” Banks said.  In some council districts, like hers, “we’d love to have the problem of too many homes,” she added.

Still, Banks wants a council discussion on development.  Banks wants to hear the circumstances that could fuel a moratorium and how one would be outlined along with if neighborhoods could request specific moratoriums.

“In case this is something people want to move forward with,” the parish should be ready, Banks said.  “How would it work?” she questioned.

She understands the concern of rising water and flooding: “[The parish] has received a tremendous amount of emails; People are requesting [a moratorium] until we get the storm water master plan figured out.  Because many of them flooded in 2016 and, more than four years later, things have not gotten better,” she said.

There is also a request to discuss the parish’s storm water master plan at a council meeting later in June.

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