Informer: Old Maplewood in Westlake bonding district

By By Andrew Perzo / American Press

My wife and I went to vote early for the Sulphur High Stadium bond issue. We were told that because we live in Precinct 405 (we vote at Center Circle Recreation in Maplewood) we were not eligible to vote on this item.

Why are we excluded? Sulphur High is the only high school we have. Does this mean that if it passes, our property taxes won’t be affected since our precinct is not allowed to vote on it?

Residents of old Maplewood — the area east of Hazel, south of U.S. 90 and north of Interstate 10 — live in the Sulphur High School attendance zone, but not in the corresponding bond district.

Sulphur High is in School Bonding District 30. But the Center Circle precinct, along with Maplewood Middle School, lies in School Bonding District 23, which is associated with Westlake.

“This has been a long-standing issue for the Maplewood neighborhood,” Kirby Smith, school system spokeswoman, wrote in an email, “and can only be addressed by moving lines for either the attendance zone or the bonding district, both of which have many associated complications and legal ramifications.”

If voters approve the $8 million bond issue Saturday, the debt would be paid using “ad valorem taxes on all taxable property within the limits of the District,” reads the proposition.

Incidentally, a school system flier on the proposition incorrectly lists part of Precinct 405 as voting in the election and, Smith noted, fails to point out that only part of Precinct 408 — the western half — is eligible to vote.

What the bond money will be used for, according to the flier:

Demolition of the home-side grandstands, along with installation of seating for 5,200 and construction of press box, ticket booth/gateway, a wall of honor and north end-zone bleachers.

Demolition of the visitor-side grandstands, along with installation of seating for 3,000 and construction of ticket booth/gateway, renovations to restrooms and work on a supply building.

Renovations to the visitor dressing room; installation of emergency generator and lighting; and work on a fire alarm, the sound system, fencing and Americans with Disabilities Act upgrades.


City plans to put trail in First Ave. median

Remaining on First Avenue from Broad Street to 12th Street in the median are ditches left when railroad tracks were eliminated years ago. These trenches pose grave dangers to pedestrians crossing the First Avenue neutral ground. Is removal of these ditches the city of Lake Charles’ responsibility?

“This area is part of a capital

improvement project to construct a multi-use bike and pedestrian trail

within the First Avenue

median,” City Administrator John Cardone wrote in an email. “The

project is in the design phase. The city will have someone

evaluate the median for hazards.”

For more information, he said, call Lori Marinovich at 491-1292.


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The Informer answers questions from readers each Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. It is researched and written by Andrew Perzo, an American Press staff writer. To ask a question, call 494-4098, press 5 and leave voice mail, or email