LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Lafayette Consolidated Government is suing St. Martin Parish Government. This comes after St. Martin Parish threatened to sue LCG just last week.
The lawsuit pertains to a year-long battle over removing spoil banks along the Vermilion River. For years, dirt levees called spoil banks lined the river. LCG and St. Martin Parish Government, however, couldn’t agree on whether or not they should be removed.
Lafayette Mayor-President Josh Guillory says it would ease flooding in both parishes, however, St. Martin Parish President Chester Cedars says it could make flooding worse in areas of St. Martin Parish.
After discovering LCG removed the spoil banks last week, Cedars called a special meeting, in which the St. Martin Parish Council gave permission to sue LCG. Before documents were filed in the court, however, LCG filed a lawsuit against St. Martin Parish Government on Wednesday.
“I want the people of St. Martin Parish to rest assured that we will continue, we being St. Martin Parish Government, will continue to aggressively and diligently protect the interests of this parish and all of our citizens in this parish, particularly, but not exclusively those who reside in the Cypress Island community,” Cedars said in response to the lawsuit.
LCG’s lawsuit is asking a judge to determine if they needed permits to remove the spoil banks. Lafayette Mayor-President Josh Guillory says LCG did not need permits. The reason for filing suit before St. Martin Parish, the lawsuit claims, is because LCG “does not want to wait a quarter of a century for it to be made clear that Lafayette Parish has no liability as it complied with all lawful regulations.”
News Ten spoke with an attorney representing St. Martin Parish Government Thursday afternoon. He says because LCG filed their lawsuit before St. Martin Parish Government, they will not be able to file a lawsuit in return. They will have to take up this ordeal in the 15th Judicial District in Lafayette.