Parish President

Robby Miller


Tangipahoa Parish offers recycling every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month, from 9:00am to 12:00 pm. There are two locations where you can bring your items; in Hammond at 44512 West Pleasant Ridge Road, and in Roseland at 63101 Commercial Street.

Plastics: Plastic bottles that have #1 through #7 inside the triangle shaped recycling symbol located typically at the bottom of the container. Beverage bottles, food containers, detergent bottles, shampoo bottles, prescription bottles, baby wipe containers, household cleaner containers, bleach bottles, flower pots, and buckets with handles removed. Metal: Aluminum, tin, and metal alloy beverage, food, and pet food cans, metal lids. Labels do not need to be removed. Cardboard: Corrugated and paperboard boxes, drink cartons, shoe boxes. Paper: Junk mail, coupons, white or colored paper, gift wrap, envelopes, paper grocery bags, catalogs, magazines, newspapers, paperback books, telephone books, shredded paper.

Plastic bags, Styrofoam, bubble wrap, plastic film, household garbage, yard trimmings, woody waste, building materials, tires, batteries, clothes hangers, soiled paper (tissues, diapers, paper towels, etc.), toys, 6-pack rings, chemical containers, packing material, plastic wrap, pizza boxes, waxed cardboard, aerosol cans, take-out food containers, photos, hard cover books, carbon paper, rubber bands.

AMITE—Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller announced today that the parish has launched its enhanced anti-litter campaign, “Operation Clean Sweep.”

Miller said his office and the Tangipahoa Parish Council are embarking on “an aggressive, full-scale program” to educate the public, eradicate litter from roadsides and drainage laterals, and develop enforceable laws to prosecute those who trash our communities.

A recent University of New Orleans survey of likely Tangipahoa Parish voters indicates that more than one-quarter of those polled believe Tangipahoa Parish has a serious problem with litter.

“Those results do not shock me,” Miller said, noting that litter was one of the top issues he heard during his 2015 campaign, and stricter litter enforcement was a priority identified by last year’s transition team committees. As a result, Miller has made litter abatement one of his administration’s top priorities.

In his first year as Parish President, Miller has focused a lot of the parish’s anti-litter efforts in conjunction with citizen groups like Tangi Clean, North Tangi Clean, and Keep Hammond Beautiful to eradicate litter and beautify the parish.

E.J. Forgotston of Hammond chairs the Tangi Clean effort, and she said the parish has made excellent progress in their litter abatement program so far. She pointed to the increased number of litter officers, the parish’s expanded litter pick up crews, and a greater effort to enforce litter laws as just a few of the parish’s more recent accomplishments. She also applauded the parish’s partnership with groups like the Louisiana Children’s Discovery Center to bring anti-litter education programs into local schools.

“The parish has increased their number of Code Enforcement officers from two to five. The number of litter crews have doubled. I’m very pleased with the progress,” Forgotston said, adding that she’s “thrilled” at the active interest of the new administration in significantly reducing litter in Tangipahoa.

Miller said groups like Tangi Clean have set the bar very high, but he believes that if we all pitch in, Tangipahoa can absolutely overcome this problem.

“While we have a big job ahead of us, I’m excited to have the opportunity to work together, not only with our citizens and our parish resources, but also with state and regional groups to tackle and solve this challenge," Miller said.

To that end, the parish is also joining forces with state agencies to address the problem head on.

“We’ve met with the Louisiana Department of Transportation and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, who will each be partnering with us on litter abatement projects,” Miller said.

In the case of DOTD, the parish will enter into a joint effort with the state to keep our interstates litter-free.

“I want to personally thank DOTD for coming in and immediately working with us to pick up litter along our interstates. Over the last several days, crews have been working extended days to collect and remove litter on I-55 from the state line south, and we appreciate their immediate response to help us in this area,” Miller said.

Similar clean ups are scheduled for I-12, and Miller said he has been told these enhanced collection efforts will become more frequent over the course of this year.

LDWF is going to help parish leaders tackle the litter problem on local tributaries.

“On April 29, Tangipahoa Parish in conjunction with Wildlife and Fisheries will hold a river clean up,” Miller said. “Our goal is to purge the river of trash, flood debris, and old camps and boats that are sinking into the river.”

Miller said he invites everyone to pitch in and help our parish become litter-free.

“I have no doubt that if we all do our part, Tangipahoa will be a model for litter abatement for our entire state,” Miller said.

To report litter and illegal dump sites, call the new Tangipahoa Parish Litter hotline, (985) 748-2265.

The Ponders Quarters Lane railroad crossing south of Amite will be closed on Tuesday, Jan. 31, for construction and maintenance work by Canadian National Rail.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said the crossing is expected to be out of service from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. that day.

No vehicle traffic will be permitted to travel through the crossing at anytime during the closure. Miller said that emergency personnel will be available for the duration of the repairs.

Miller said Ponders Quarters Lane runs from US 51 east over the CN rail line just north of Larock Road.

On Tuesday, Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller requested that all flags be lowered this week in memory of longtime Tangipahoa Clerk of Court Julian Dufreche, who died Monday. 

Dufreche was serving in his fourth term as Clerk of Court at the time of his death. 

"Julian Dufreche spent much of his life in service to the people of Tangipahoa Parish. He was elected to many offices over his career, including city councilman, Mayor of Ponchatoula, and most recently as our Tangipahoa Parish Clerk of Court, but regardless of the role in which he was elected to serve, Julian went out of way to help people. There is no doubt that he will be remembered for the kindness he showed over a lifetime of selfless service to others," Miller said. 

Miller asked that all flags be placed at half-mast until the close of business Friday, Jan. 13.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller announced that parish road crews have begun the process of “sanding” local bridges.

Miller said the process by which sand is applied to the bridge surface is designed to combat slick, icy conditions on the elevated portion of the roadway.

“Our crews will be following protocol to help prevent icy accumulation on our local bridges,” Miller said.

Miller asked motorists to be on the look-out for road and bridge crews. “This is critical work, and it will likely create a few delays."

Crews will begin sanding bridges at the state/parish line and move southward throughout the day.

AMITE—Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller and parish emergency preparedness officials are working around the clock, monitoring the forecast for an icy winter weather weekend.

As of late Thursday, Miller said National Weather Service officials are projecting the icy rain will reach our area by Friday evening.

Parish road crews are prepared to spring into action, sanding bridge surfaces well before the conditions deteriorate.

Miller said the process by which sand is applied to the bridge surface is designed to combat slick, icy conditions on the elevated portion of the roadway.

“Our crews will be following the parish plan to curb any icy accumulation on our local bridges,” Miller said late Thursday, adding “We anticipate the worst of the conditions will begin Friday evening. Obviously, if you don’t have to be on the roads, we encourage you to stay home, if possible.”

Once the plan is enacted, parish crews will begin sanding bridges at the state/parish line and move southward, as needed, Miller said.

AMITE—Tangipahoa Parish residents seeking to file permit applications with the parish will not need to drive to Hammond any longer.

On Tuesday, the parish’s north Tangi branch of its permit office reopened, albeit in a different location than it was prior to the August 2016 flood.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said the office is now located inside the former Ponchatoula Homestead building at 113 North Bay Street in Amite. The office is on the corner, directly across the street from the Amite Courthouse.

Services offered at this location will include sewer inspections, Public Works and Road & Bridge Department inspections, as well as all types of residential and commercial permitting.

“Like many of our residents who suffered water damage in their homes, our north Tangi Permit office in Roseland was also impacted by the August flooding. After months of sharing facilities with our Hammond offices, today we take another step in the parish’s recovery by reopening a north end branch of our permitting offices. We are also consolidating our Public Works and sewer inspection services into this facility as we continue to determine what steps will be taken to restore our Roseland office complex,” Miller said.

Hours of operation for these offices will be from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The phone number is (985) 748-2024.

World Renew is in town!  See attached press release…  United Way is working with them along with the Long Term Recovery Committee here in Tangipahoa. 

As a part of helping out the community they are doing FREE assessments of damage for homeowners who had flood damage.  If anyone has not had someone look at their house to get estimates of damage costs then they can call.  If they have an estimate, they will also look at it to see if it is in line with costs.  They don’t build, they just help homeowners get a realistic idea of the cost they are looking at to rebuild and repair their homes.

They are only here this week and next week.  They are a REPUTABLE organization.  They do NOT charge and will not only be walking neighborhoods to help but you can call or stop in their offices to get an appointment.  I am sure each of you have people in your organization that have had damage.  If anyone wants to talk to them and see what or how they can help on an assessment please pass on the number on the flyer.

Please feel free to share this information with those individuals still in need.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller reminds survivors of the August flood event that Monday, Nov. 14 is the deadline to register for disaster assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Miller said residents may register with FEMA by going online with any computer, smartphone or tablet to, calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362, or downloading the FEMA mobile app. Survivors who use a TTY may call 800-462-7585 to register.

Survivors can also register for assistance at any FEMA disaster recovery center. To find a disaster recovery center near you, call the FEMA helpline or text DRC and your zip code to 43362. You can also find a center near you by downloading the FEMA mobile app or going online to

FEMA assistance for homeowners and renters may include grants for rent, temporary housing and home repair to their primary residence, as well as other serious disaster-related needs, such as medical and dental expenses or funeral and burial costs.

Survivors should also be sure to submit their disaster loan application to the U.S. Small Business Administration by Nov.14. Submitting a loan application does not imply acceptance of a loan, but it is a necessary step to being considered for other forms of disaster assistance.

For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling 800-659-2955, emailing, or visiting SBA’s website at Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call 800-877-8339. SBA representatives are also available at any disaster recovery center, disaster loan outreach center, or business recovery center.

AMITE—Friday, Oct. 21, is the final day for residents to sign up for the FEMA-approved “Right of Entry” (ROE) program.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said the ROE program allows contractors to remove debris bordering on a public right-of-way and extending up to 30 feet onto private property to help flood victims rid their homes and property of disaster debris.

The ROE program also applies to residents who live along state highways.

Under FEMA guidelines, the Parish is required to obtain written permission from the homeowner for debris collection on that private property.

“A Right Of Entry form must be signed by the homeowner,” Miller said, adding that renters also must obtain written permission from the actual property owner before debris collection can begin on those private properties.

Residents can call the Planning Office at (985) 340-9028 to schedule a time for the debris contractor to go to their home so the homeowner can fill out the Right of Entry form. The Planning Office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Property owners are asked to provide the following items:
  *Photo ID or driver’s license
  *Homeowners’ insurance with policy number
  *Any insurance claim numbers
  *Flood insurance with policy number
  *Flood insurance claim number

Miller said that post-storm construction debris is not eligible for collection by the parish’s debris contractor. 

“Some contractors are putting paint and freshly cut sheet rock on storm debris piles, and our debris collector is not able to pick up those materials as part of this process,” Miller said.

Debris collection continues across Tangipahoa Parish. Miller encourages any resident who has not received a “first pass” in the collection process to contact Tangipahoa Parish Government’s Road and Bridge Department at (985) 748-3211 so that this information can be passed on to the contractor.

Miller said TPG is now assisting the state in picking up debris along state highways. 

“It’s all about team work,” Miller said, indicating that the parish is proud to be able to partner with the state and help all Tangipahoa residents to rid their yards and ditches of flood materials.


The District now offers the service for customer alerts via their website,

Sign up is free; however, for text alerts on your phone, standard message and data rates through your cellular carrier may apply.

To sign up for alerts, customers should go to the home page and scroll down the right side of the page to the “SIGN UP FOR ALERTS” button. Clicking on that icon will direct customers to a brief online form whereby the customer inputs his name. The customer can choose to submit his email or cell phone number and carrier company to receive messages via email or text, per each customer’s preference.

The final step is to click the “SUBSCRIBE” button, which will add the customer’s info to the district’s alert distribution service.

Once subscribed, customers receive alerts as soon as they are posted to the district website. Those notices include outage reports, boil advisories, and more.

For more information, contact the Tangipahoa Water District at (985) 345-6457

Tangipahoa Parish Government is waiving permit fees for residents who are making repairs and rebuilding in the aftermath of the August floods.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said building permits are required for all structural improvements in our parish, but local leaders are waiving permit fees for anyone who chooses to rebuild following the flood.

Permits are issued for a variety of construction projects, including new buildings, additions, renovations, residential improvements like decks, garages, fences, and sheds, along with electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems.

Anyone who experienced floodwaters and chooses to rebuild their property to its pre-storm condition should file for a permit free of charge, Miller said.

“This is just one way that Parish Government is helping our residents recover from this storm,” Miller said.

While permits applications must be filed in person, the parish website ( offers a lot of information on what you will need to do to file for a building permit. Due to flood damage at the parish’s Amite Health Unit, permits are currently available in Hammond at the Mike Clausen Environmental Services Building on West Club Deluxe Road.

Miller encouraged residents not to discount the value of going through the permit process. “Your home is an investment,. If your construction project does not comply with our community’s building codes, the value of your investment could be reduced. Insurance companies also have specific requirements about improvements made to your home, and that’s important when you need to file a claim. In the event you choose to sell your home, those same permits are good documents to have in recording the history of your property. So, even though you won’t be charged to file these permits, we encourage residents to take advantage of the permit process.”

“I’m so proud of our Permit Office for spearheading this effort to help our residents who were inundated in the August flood,” Miller said.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller reports that next week contractors will begin Phase II of debris collection following the August floods, and he reminds residents who have debris to be picked up to please put those materials curbside over the upcoming Labor Day weekend.

“Our clean up effort is going very well, and our contractors are now ready to make a second pass of the parish,” Miller said.

Parish leaders encourage residents who have flood-damaged materials and other storm debris to collect those items and place them on the public right-of-way at their home or business. Workers may not go on private property to collect storm debris, Miller said.

The items should be piled up and off the roadway, so as not to impede traffic.

LA 1062 is closed in both directions until further notice between LA 40 (Loranger) and LA 445 (Husser) at the
Little Chappepeela Creek Bridge due to bridge repairs.

Traffic is not passing through, and motorists are advised to use an alternate route.

LA DOTD District 62, Hammond
(985) 375-0190

Two bridge replacement projects scheduled in Tangipahoa Parish have been postponed until further notice, officials reported Wednesday.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said he was notified Wednesday that the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development has postponed bridge replacement projects on North River Road in Kentwood and on Durbin Road in Natalbany.

Although planned to begin this month and continue through the fall, the projects are now on hold until further notice, according to information provided by DOTD.

Miller said he will continue to monitor the situation and notify residents of any updates to the construction schedule.

“These bridge replacements remain a top priority for our administration, and we continue to work with our state partners to insure that these projects are completed in a timely manner for our residents,” Miller said.

For more information, please contact Tangipahoa Parish Government at (985) 748-3211.

The Shelter at Home Program will enable eligible individuals or families whose homes were damaged in the August flooding to take shelter in their own homes while they rebuild, instead of having to stay in a hotel, rental or mass shelter. 

For more information click the links below:



AMITE—Two south Tangipahoa Parish bridges will be closed until further notice due to severe structural damage caused by the August flood.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller said the Walsh Road bridge and the Stein Road bridge are going to be closed effective immediately due to structural damage caused by the August flood.

“Our Public Works Department continues to inspect our local roads and bridges to insure that they are in sound, working order in the aftermath of the floods earlier this month,” Miller said, adding that crews are making repairs where needed.

Miller said traffic will be re-routed and detoured around these bridge closures.

Both Stein Road and Walsh Road are located off Happywoods Road, on the west side of the Hammond city limits.

There is no immediate timetable for when these bridges will be reopened to the public, Miller said.

All damage should be reported directly to FEMA. Tangipahoa Parish Gov. will no longer be taking the assessment information. Contact FEMA at 1-800-621-3362 or online at

AMITE—As heavy rains continue to pound the area, Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller is urging a voluntary evacuation for residents who experienced flooding earlier this year, during the March rain event.

“The National Weather Service forecast suggests this rain event will be equal to or worse than the March flood,” Miller said midday Friday.

“We urge those who live along the river and who can safely evacuate to higher ground to do so now,” Miller said. He also encouraged anyone who experienced flooding in March to consider getting to higher ground now.

“We have daylight for a few more hours. If you need to move to higher ground and can do so, now is the time,” Miller advised.

Thus far, the parish has conducted 140 active water rescues. The Louisiana National Guard has staged two high water vehicles at the parish’s Emergency Operations Center, and they will be deployed, as needed. Over a dozen state highways have been closed and more than 62 parish roads are impassable by water.

Miller advised, “Do not wait for conditions to deteriorate later tonight. If you experienced flooding in March, make your plans now to get to higher ground while we still have daylight."


The Tangipahoa Parish Government has been issued an application package for the homeless prevention and assistance for the Emergency Solutions Grant Program (ESG) funds, administered by the Louisiana Housing Corporation (LHC).  Click here to download.

A Resolution providing support for the Restore Act local Multi-Year Plan, as amended, and selected projects, and authorizing the Tangipahoa Parish President to execute documents and agreements required in connection with the Tangipahoa Parish Restore Act Program through the U.S. Dept. of Treasury.

Whereas, the Tangipahoa Parish Government is making an application for use of Restore Act funds in the amount of approximately $668,361.25 provided through the BP Settlement-Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund, and use of such funds and projects must be reviewed and approved by the U.S. Department of Treasury in line with the eligible activities outlined in the “Resources and Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act of 2012”; and

Whereas, in order to qualify for these funds, Tangipahoa Parish must submit an application package that includes the amended Multi-Year Plan with projects and narrative that document the eligible activities selected by the Parish, and that allowance for public input was provided; and

Whereas, the Tangipahoa Parish Council shall provide a resolution of support and designation of the Parish President as the authorized representative to sign the application, related documents,  and to be the authorized representative for the project; and

Whereas, the Parish has designated several primary projects to be funded within the Plan and with these Restore Act funds, shown as Attachment “A”.

Now Be It Therefore Resolved; that the Tangipahoa Parish Council hereby endorses the Parish’s proposed Restore Act projects and  the Multi-Year Plan, and also hereby designates the Parish President as the authorized representative of Tangipahoa Parish to execute documents and agreements in connection with this program, application and subsequent project documents and agreements that may be forthcoming.

Public input is encouraged at this meeting. The public may also call the Parish office Grants Coordinator at 985 748-3211 for further information or comments.

  • Lee’s Landing Boat Launch- repairs and reconstruction ($558,257)


  • Tangipahoa River preliminary dredging study for channel at Lake Pontchartrain ($25,000)


  • Parish Tourism project for “Parish Branding” and Greenway project from Ponchatoula to Manchac- Celebrating and Preserving Natural Resources  ($45,104.25)


  • Biodiversity inventory and study- Southeastern La. University ($40,000)

This is only a preliminary application and does not constitute a guarantee that funding will be provided or that a grant will be approved.

Tangipahoa Parish President, Robby Miller, would like to encourage flood victims interested in elevating their residence to fill out a preliminary application.
The parish would like to have these applications on file should we receive Hazard Mitigation Funds from FEMA in the future.  These grants typically require a cost share from the homeowner.  The time required to get these projects funded can be lengthy; however, collecting this information is vital towards the recovery process during a disaster.
If you have any questions, you can contact the Tangipahoa Parish Permit Office. 985-542-2117.



AMITE---Tangipahoa building and environmental health officials are doing their part to streamline the permitting process, a top goal of new Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller.

Miller announced this week that electrical permits are easier to get now than ever before, pointing to simple steps the permit department is taking to make the process simpler for applicants.

“With the proper paperwork in place, the application process for electrical hook up can be done over the phone in many cases,” Miller said.

The key item to the process is an approved sewer inspection, which is obtained through the state Environmental Health Department, which has offices in Hammond and Roseland. If the sewer meets health department standards, an electrical hook-up can literally be scheduled over the phone with a credit card.

“Our permitting team is working hand-in-hand with the homeowner and the Environmental Health Department to expedite the process every step of the way,” Miller said, adding that the offices, which are located across the hall from each other at the Hammond Environmental Services Building on Club Deluxe Road, are now communicating one-on-one to make the process move smoother.

“Increased communication between our agencies delivers faster, better service for our customers,” Miller said.

Miller says the department is already looking forward to an even better-streamlined process, working toward an online permitting system in the next year. An information technology specialist by trade, Miller said the new computerized permitting system will be similar to those used in larger metro parishes.

“Our goal is to streamline the process for homeowners and contractors alike,” Miller said, adding that this is one of his top goals in his first year as Parish President.

For more information on the permitting process, go to, or call (985) 542-2117.


AMITE---The Federal Transit Administration has awarded Tangipahoa Parish Government $409,000 to continue its “urban" bus service for the next two years.

Tangipahoa Parish President Robby Miller says the grant focuses on the south end of the parish, which meets FTA qualifications as an urban area. Several years ago, the southern half of the parish was designated as an independent Metropolitan Statistical Area, due to that population density.

Funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation, the transit operates in the Hammond-Ponchatoula area, through a partnership with the Tangipahoa Voluntary Council on Aging.

The bus service runs both inside the municipalities and in the adjacent rural areas.

The grant is used to upgrade the TVCOA’s bus routes in the southern “urbanized” portion of Tangipahoa Parish. The grant also provides for the purchase of new transit vans and additional bus stop shelters to provide better protection from weather elements for passengers.

Local matching funds are provided by the TVCOA, as well as the Cities of Hammond and Ponchatoula, to enhance the service.

Miller said the parish will continue to operate a rural public van service throughout the remainder of the parish, using DOTD grant funds allocated to the TVCOA.

Our goal moving forward is to seek new avenues and additional grant funds to provide better transportation options for our residents in our densely populated rural areas on the north end, Miller said.

Currently North Tangipahoa is not eligible for the FTA grant funding because it is not considered an “urban” area.



Miller says the parish will begin work on continued improvements at the Tangipahoa Parish Courthouse and build a new open-air but roofed small animal barn/warm up area at the Florida Parishes Arena using grant funds.

These are the first two grant-infused projects the administration will start in 2016, Miller said.

The Amite Courthouse improvements mark a continuation of more than a $500,000 investment in the facility over the last three years. This year, the parish will renovate the courthouse restrooms, making them more user-friendly and bringing them into compliance with updates to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). A local contractor, Brunt Construction of Independence, recently submitted the low bid, and the Tangipahoa Parish Council will likely award the contract on this project in the next 30 days, Miller said.

In addition to the courthouse improvements, the parish will soon begin construction of the new warm-up barn at the Florida Parishes Agricultural Event Center in Amite.

The 1800 square foot project will be paid primarily through grant funds with a 25% in-kind local match from parish government. The expansion represents a $318,000 improvement at the Arena, which will also seek a new water line extension between the Arena and its new Event Center indoor meeting facility.

The Event Center, Miller said, provides the area with a “unique” space for meetings, conferences, and special gatherings. The parish president said he predicts that the Event Center will become a “major draw” in Northern Tangipahoa Parish, bringing large numbers of visitors and events to the Amite area.

Going into the final fiscal quarter of the year, Tangipahoa Parish Government has been awarded nearly $200,000 in state and federal grant funds to make local infrastructure improvements.

Tangipahoa Parish President Gordon Burgess said the parish has received six new grant awards totaling $197,359 to make improvements on various projects, including the Florida Parishes Arena, the Animal Shelter, two Hammond fire stations, and several public well sites.

“We are grateful to the support of our local legislative delegation for their assistance in delivering these grant dollars to the people of Tangipahoa Parish,” Burgess said.

The projects that will be funded include:

*The Florida Parishes Arena in Amite will receive $14,896 to purchase equipment and make audio-video improvements. The State is also providing $9,500 in grant funds to extend the Arena’s water lines to service the facility’s new Small Animal Barn.

*The Tangipahoa Parish Animal Shelter in Hammond will receive $14,986 to make repairs and improvements. This is in addition to $25,000 in FEMA funding dedicated toward wind-hardening and safety improvements at the facility.

*FEMA funding has also been awarded to complete wind-hardening improvements at two Hammond Fire Stations. Wainwright Construction is the low-bidder on that project and will complete the improvements for $115,000.

*Louisiana Community Water Enrichment Funds (CWEF) in the amount of $18,067 will be used to install chlorine water analyzers at several public well sites in the parish. This project is being completed in partnership with the Tangipahoa Parish Water District.

AMITE—Tangipahoa Parish leaders are using more resources than ever before to combat the area’s litter problem, relying now on the additional manpower of criminal offenders to clean up our parish.

Tangipahoa Parish President Gordon Burgess says that since the first of the year, nearly 3,200 bags of garbage have been collected by community service workers and inmate crews who are cleaning up along local roadways.

The programs, strategic partnerships between parish government and law enforcement, ensure additional manpower for litter pick up, which is happening on a nearly six-day-per week schedule.

“The parish relies on two different partnerships with the Sheriff’s Office and the courts to help our Road and Bridge program get trash off the roads and out of drainage ditches and laterals,” Burgess said.

The first partnership, the DWI Community Service Workers Litter Pick Up Program, represents a cooperative effort between the parish and the court system. In this effort, the court system sentences a DWI offender to 16 hours of community service which is performed over the course of two eight-hour days picking up roadside litter.

Burgess said offenders report to parish’s maintenance yard at 7 a.m. and ride caravan style with parish workers to the clean up sites. There, they put in a full eight-hour day.

In the first six months of this year, the DWI Community Service Workers have collected 1,155 bags of trash. The program only operates on alternating Saturdays, and so far this year, an estimated 1,592 service hours have been performed by DWI offenders to clean up local roadways.

The second partnership is the parish’s Inmate Litter Abatement Program, which works Monday through Friday each week to collect litter off parish roads. Inmate labor is utilized, under the direct supervision of a retired TPSO deputy who works for the road and bridge office.

The goal of this crew is to clean up local roadways prior to the Road and Bridge mowers coming through to cut grass and ditches. 

“This way, our workers can get right to the heart of their jobs, keeping them on task with keeping the grass cut while preventing the garbage in the overgrowth from being mulched with the yard waste,” Burgess said.

Although these teams are taking large quantities of litter off parish roads, Tangipahoa has a long way to go in the litter abatement battle, Burgess said.

Burgess said statistics from the first half of this year show that many of the roads where major clean ups have taken place continue to collect trash even after the litter crews come in.

“We had one road in the south end of the parish where these crews picked up 21 bags of trash over a two-day period in April. Two months to the day later, our crews returned and picked up 14 more bags of litter. I think that speaks volumes about the problem we are facing with litter in our parish,” Burgess said.

Not only is litter ugly, but trash clogs up drainage outlets, creating major issues when it rains.

“It’s an unending cycle,” Burgess said, noting that his office gets calls both litter and drainage problems caused by the trash along our roadsides.

Burgess said education programs and awareness campaigns have not made a dent in this overwhelming problem.

“The community has to get on board,” Burgess said, adding that without everyone pitching in, the problem is likely to continue to worsen.

For more information on how you can help with litter abatement in Tangipahoa Parish, contact Parish Government at (985) 748-3211.

Parish officials are taking a tough stand against a longtime problem:

theft of traffic signs.

Tangipahoa Parish President Gordon Burgess said Tuesday his office will actively work to investigate thefts of stop signs and the such-and they will pursue charges against individuals who have stolen or are in possession of stolen traffic signs.

"What is typically described as a 'prank' is a criminal act that can lead to injury or even death on our roadways," Burgess said.

The parish president said the end of summer traditionally sees a spike in the number of traffic signs that go "missing" on parish roads.

"This year we are going to actively investigate and prosecute these cases,"

Burgess said, noting that the charges could range from vandalism and criminal mischief to theft and even reckless endangerment in cases where the lack of signage results in an accident with injuries, or worse.

Burgess said individuals found in possession of stolen signage are guilty of a crime as well.

"These signs are not free. They are produced, acquired, and installed at taxpayer expense. We have an obligation in parish government to protect public property, and we will take action against those who destroy taxpayer property," Burgess said.

Anyone who sees missing traffic signs should contact Parish Government at

(985) 748-3211. Anyone with information about the theft of traffic signs can anonymously contact Crime Stoppers of Tangipahoa at 1-800-554-5245.

If "location, location, location" is the key to every good business plan, then having a plan to find the right site is crucial to generate economic development prospects, says Tangipahoa Parish President Gordon Burgess.

Burgess and the parish's economic development leaders are building a database identifying potentially the "best industrial and commercial sites in Tanigpahoa Parish," and the process, referred to as "site suitability," has classified at least 31 such locations, primarily along the I-55/I-12 corridor.

"This is a long-range goal to identify key tracts of land and provide property owners with the resources they need to attract potential industry," Burgess said.

The Tangipahoa Parish Economic Development Foundation (TEDF) contracted with LEO, LLC, a firm that specializes in site identification. Using engineering and GIS data, LEO developed a series of potential land tracts based on a series of "suitability" characteristics, emphasizing access to infrastructure, water, sewer, gas, electricity, fiber, and of course, modes of transportation.

The sites range from 25 to 250 acres each, TEDF Director Stacey Neal said, noting that the 31 prime locations were further vetted to avoid potential zoning questions, like placing an industrial site next door to a school.

Neal said TEDF then contacted Entergy's Research and Engineering Services department, who helped develop site-specific maps of the 31 locations, outlining their specific attractions, from elevation grades to utility infrastructure, wetlands and environmental determinations, as well as any other considerations. Entergy is the process of creating site-by-site videos of the parcels, and those tools will all be available for use by economic development officials to help showcase the available sites in the area.

"These are tools, additional resources, our office can provide free of charge to the landowner," Neal said, noting that while her office is not a real estate sales office, TEDF does act as a liaison to introduce business developers with property holders.

Thusfar, six "top sites" have been identified. Those locations, including the Fluker "Megasite", two tracts in Hammond, and one apiece in Kentwood, Amite, and Ponchatoula, are all well on their way to becoming Louisiana "certified" industrial sites. That distinction will make the land easier to market and easier to match with potential buyers.

"There are currently six certified sites in St. Tammany; we have three here in Tangipahoa," Burgess said, adding that the site suitability database work will enable our parish to better market itself for incoming industry.

"Tangipahoa is taking proactive steps to aggressively market itself as business-ready, industry-ready," Neal said.

The parish continues to partner with other groups, like the Small Business Development Center at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond. SBDC can research additional demographics that appeal to industry heads.

"They can provide data on work force, market name it. That's the data we need to drive our sales pitch and land these companies," Burgess said.