By Bonnie Culverhouse
Three proposed ordinances that have been under city workshop scrutiny for months bit the dust at Monday night’s meeting of the Minden City Council.
Two of the ordinances concern public safety and have been presented by and discussed with the Minden Police Association. They included a curfew for juveniles and use of parks and city-owned property where security control or traffic control are necessary.
Mike Harper, a District E resident who is on SIP (Safety Initiative Program) to study the ordinances, said a lot of thought, effort and compromise went into them.
“It was eye-opening,” Harper said. “I am very unhappy when children are shot in the middle of the night. We tried to craft something that we felt, while not ideal, was at least a step in the right direction to get kids off the street at night when the majority of the trouble happens.”
Dennis Myles, also a District E resident, was not in favor of the curfew ordinance. He asked the council to vote against it.
“I have yet to hear any of the facts of crimes that happen from 10 p.m. until 5 in the morning,” Myles said. “I haven’t heard any statistics.”
Myles said juvenile services should handle the situation and the ordinance would be redundant.
“This curfew is an invasion of privacy,” he continued. “How are you going to ascertain who is 17 and up? You’re going to be stopping everybody who looks like they are 17 and under.”
The vote to deny implementation of both safety ordinances was 3-2, with District A councilman Wayne Edwards, District B councilwoman Terika Williams-Walker and District C councilman Vincen Bradford casting the “no” votes.
Harper said he was disappointed in the vote but doesn’t feel he wasted his time.
“Something may come of it,” Harper said.
The third ordinance covered vacant structures and the ability to hold the owners accountable when their buildings falls into disrepair.
It was also voted down by the same 3-2 vote, with District D councilman Michael Roy and District E councilwoman Pam Bloxom voting “yes” to all three ordinances.
With the exception of last month’s meeting minutes, which passed 2-3 (Walker and Bradford cast dissenting votes), items on Monday’s agenda that passed unanimously include the following:
- Police officer reinstatement. The council voted unanimously to reinstate Anthony Miller as a Minden Police Officer;
- A resolution establishing fees for collection and disposal of garbage and refuse;
- A resolution for municipal water pollution prevention;
- A resolution for an Opioid litigation memorandum of understanding;
- An intergovernmental agreement with the Webster Parish Sheriff concerning use of inmates for litter collection;
- Authority to advertise for bids for one backyard track unit with a pole dolly;
- Budget/financial report for October;
- Police report for October; and,
- Fire report for October.
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