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After threatening to sue homeowner for ignoring letter, parish now admits it never sent it
PRAIRIEVILLE - There's more to the story about a fence in Ascension Parish. A parish official told 2 On Your Side on Thursday that a certified letter had been sent to the property owners with an official offer from the parish to move the fence to the servitude line.
Turns out, that letter never existed.
Earlier this month Nick Ehrhard and his wife were facing a lawsuit from Ascension Parish over their fence. The item appeared on the March 16 council agenda before it was removed by councilwoman Terri Casso.
The fence was built in January, and Ehrhard got a permit. Soon after that permit was issued, the parish said it was missing a signature and that it was not valid. Even though the fence aligns with all of the others, a fairly new ordinance says that fences are prohibited within a drainage servitude.
Realizing the error with the permit issued, Parish Attorney Jean-Paul Robert called Ehrhard with a compromise to move the fence at the parish's expense. Ehrhard had questions about the verbal offer and emailed them to the parish at the end of February. Since, Ehrhard says the questions have not been answered and phone calls have not been returned.
"The next thing we know our name is on a docket to be potentially sued by the government," he said.
The parish told 2 On Your Side last week it sent Ehrhard a certified letter with an official offer to move the fence. Monday, the parish admitted the certified letter never existed. The parish said the next step is to file a lawsuit since they never received a response to a letter, which did not exist.
"I'm perplexed why the parish finds it a good idea to have a lawsuit against one of their parish teachers and a social worker for a fence," Ehrhard said.
The parish was questioned about why it decided to move forward with a lawsuit without answering Ehrhard's questions. The inquiry was not addressed at the time this story aired.
The item regarding the lawsuit could reappear on the April council agenda.
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