LIVINGSTON – The Livingston Parish Ordinance Committee on Thursday evening will hammer out details on an ordinance which would create more specific guidelines on burial plots.

The committee in the 5 p.m. meeting at the Parish Council Chamber will also discuss the proposed regulations on firing ranges, an issue the Parish Council has discussed sporadically since November.

The burial plot proposal comes amid the ongoing process of identification and reinternment of caskets which opened and floated above ground during the August flood.

Mark Harrell, director of the Livingston Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, made the ordinance request.

He could not provide an estimate on how much the reintermnment process will cover the parish.

“We have no idea yet because we’re still a third of the way through it,” Harrell said. “Some of this is already state law, such as marking the caskets.”

Harrell also wants the ordinance to grant him the right to fine funeral homes for future violations.

He has already ordered the labeling and placement of a form on other burial information in each casket during the reinternment process.

The proposed firing range ordinance would address noise, safety concerns and implementation of a lead abatement program.

The Livingston Parish Council unanimously shot down a developer’s permit request for Springfield firing range Thursday night, but the matter could resurface once members approve a revised ordinance.

The council acted on the advice of Parish Attorney Chris Moody to vote on the request by landowner Jay Foster, a Livingston Parish native who now lives in Pumpkin Center. The council based its vote on the ordinance currently on the books, which bans the ranges from locating within two miles of a residential area.

The Parish Council Ordinance Committee in a Nov. 18 meeting drew up a revision to regulations on firing ranges, but the council tabled discussion of the proposed at the meeting. Committee chairman Shane Mack said additional changes are in order before it goes to the full council for a vote

Council members had tabled discussion on the firing range in three previous meetings.

The council acted upon Moody’s advice not to delay the vote, and to base the decision solely on the current ordinance.

The current ordinance bans shooting firearms within 100 feet of any public road or 500 feet of any residents. It also mandates that shooting range built within a 2-mile radius of a church, school or residential area obtain written approval from the Parish Council.

Residents at the Nov. 10 meeting expressed concerns that a firing range would threaten their safety, increase noise along the streets and lead to a reduction in their property value.

An agreement by committee members would send the proposals to the full council at its meeting immediately after the hearing.

The council will then consider whether to move forward with a formal proposal, which would require advertisement in the official journal before it goes upfor final vote at the next council meeting. 

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