News

Road Status: Alternating Lane Closure Alert - Harrison Ave (Covington)

Alternating Lane Closure Alert for Harrison Ave (Covington)

A geotech company will have alternating lane closures on Harrison Ave, between the hours of 9 am and 3 pm from 8/12/20 through 8/16/20, while crews take core samples for the Design of the Harrison Ave Improvements Project.

Motorist can expect some delays and are encouraged to take alternate routes if possible.

St. Tammany Parish Government Partners with Business Community and Elected Officials in Mask Ask Campaign

St. Tammany Parish Government Partners with Business Community and Elected Officials in Mask Ask Campaign

 St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper has enlisted the help of local mayors, leaders in the business community, and local businesses to help him continue to spread the word and provide educational information about the importance of wearing a mask to minimize the spread of COVID-19. In what Cooper calls his Mask Ask campaign, he has partnered with the St. Tammany Corporation and the St. Tammany Chamber to produce a limited number of signs made for local business to display in their businesses. The signs are tools to increase educational awareness on why the Centers for Disease Control recommends masking to slow the spread of COVID-19. The signs are free for pick up to any business wishing to participate. They encourage citizens to take personal responsibility, and to do their parts with catchy phrases like “It’s not much to ask — wear a mask.” Rip Stoltz, President/Owner of SEI-Specialty Enhanced Imaging in Slidell, generously donated production costs as part of the Public awareness effort.

In addition, Cooper has produced television PSAs enlisting local mayors and business leaders throughout St. Tammany, asking citizens to Slow the Pace — Cover Your Face, as well as PSAs for local radio.

“People tell me all the time they want to help local businesses recover. Here’s an easy way we all can help. Wear a mask when you’re in local businesses and restaurants so you don’t unknowingly spread COVID-19. This way we can keep businesses and restaurants open,” Cooper said. “We want a healthy community where our citizens feel safe going out. We want to move forward — none of us wants to go back to Phase 1. I’ve said it before — we each have the choice to either detract from our progress or to contribute to our recovery. Let’s all choose to move toward recovery. So, it’s not much to ask — wear a mask.”

“This partnership is an easy one. Let’s work together to do the small things — like wear a mask and physically distance — so we can move our community and our economy forward,” said Chris Masingill, CEO of St. Tammany Corporation. “We all want to see recovery, and we will if we all work together to make it happen.”

“Our leadership is promoting social responsibility to end the spread of Covid-19. This is a parish-wide appeal. Every one of us, at every age and stage of life, want to move through to the other side of this pandemic,” said Lacey Osborne, CEO of the St. Tammany Chamber. “These signs are another tool our businesses can use to remind customers that the mask mandate is critical to stopping the spread as well as to rebuild our economy.”

Signs may be picked up at the locations below between the hours of 10 a.m. – 4p.m.

St. Tammany Parish Government (985) 898-5243; 21490 Koop Drive Building A

St. Tammany Corporation, (985) 809-7874, 21489 Koop Drive, Suite 7

At either location of the St. Tammany Chamber, (985) 892- 3216. In Slidell, 2220 Carey Street, and in Covington, 610 Hollycrest Blvd.  

Businesses wishing to have signs delivered, please call (985)809-1411 to arrange.

 

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You may view the PSAs here: Slow the Pace - Business -Released August 5, 2020

                                                 Slow the Pace – Elected Leaders – Released  July 10, 2020                   

                                                               

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August 2020 St. Tammany Parish Council Meeting Canceled

August 2020 St. Tammany Parish Council Meeting Canceled

The August 6, 2020 St. Tammany Parish Council Meeting is cancelled due to inadequate public notice. The St. Tammany Parish Council met the deadline for publication, however due to circumstances beyond their control, the Public Notice was not published in the Paper of Record — the St. Tammany Farmer.


Details on when the meeting will be rescheduled will be announced as soon as details are finalized.

Anyone with questions regarding this matter should contact St. Tammany Parish Council Administrator, Terry Hand at (985) 898-3095.

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St. Tammany Parish Department of Animal Services Kicks off Clear the Shelters 2020

Today, St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper announced exciting news about events taking place during the month of August and beyond for the St. Tammany Parish Animal Shelter. The shelter gratefully welcomes as a partner Mardi Paws, the super krewe for k9s. Together they will host several initiatives to increase adoptions, expand education, and raise awareness about the shelter.  The kick-off to this partnership will be joint participation in Clear the Shelters 2020, a nation-wide, month-long fee-waived “Adopt and Donate” effort starting Saturday, August 1, 2020.  Mardi Paws will lend a paw to this event by giving away a free backpack of Summer Lovin’ swag to everyone who adopts a cat or dog from the shelter during the month of August.

“We are very excited about Clear the Shelters 2020. The expansion of the event to the entire month of August will undoubtedly help many of our animals who need homes. In addition, this event will truly highlight our relationship with Mardi Paws as they work so closely with us to feature the work of our committed shelter employees and to partner with us in finding homes for these animals,” Cooper Said. “Our shelter accepts every animal brought in, and we work every day to place adoptable animals in loving forever homes. This is an opportunity for citizens to help us find homes for these animals. With adoption fees waived for the month of August, we hope to surpass our monthly adoption records.”

"Mardi Paws is all about pups and we're excited to partner with our St. Tammany Parish open admissions Animal Shelter this summer. They take in thousands of abandoned, surrendered and stray animals each year, they can't possibly re-home all of these animals without the community's help," said Denise Gutnisky, Founder Mardi Paws. “We know this partnership will mean positive outcomes for the animals, and hopefully raise awareness about how the community can make a difference, and this is what we hope to achieve.”

Mardi Paws has donated over 70 crates to Support the recent Wings of Rescue Transport flights, and is currently raising money to fund a fall 2020 flight for St. Tammany and Tangipahoa Parish Shelters. Over 100 animals —including cats and dogs — from the St. Tammany Parish Animal Shelter, on four separate Wings of Rescue flights, have been rehomed in 2020.

This year’s Clear the Shelters event will be virtual. Anyone wishing to adopt can make an appointment with Animal Services by calling 985-809-0183. This year, GreaterGood.org is joining with Clear the Shelters to raise money for shelters around the country. To support the St. Tammany Parish Department of Animal Services, follow this link.  Money raised for the St. Tammany Parish Animal Shelter will fund costs such as crates for pups for rescue transports; foster supplies such as: crates, bottles, puppy/kitten milk replacer and heating pads; toys; treats; and cat hideaway boxes, to name a few.

The Summer Lovin’ Swag backpack from Mardi Paws includes: Summer Lovin’ T-shirt, three free days of camp + bath for dogs at Camp Bow Wow, Covington, MedVet Leading Specialty Healthcare for Pets pop-up water bowl, Tito’s Vodka for Dog People Bandana, and a Bag of Marsh Dog treats.

To learn more about Clear the Shelters 2020, and to see adoptable pets, visit, www.cleartheshelters.com.

Also, look for these ongoing and upcoming events with Mardi Paws: Mutts to the Rescue— www.MuttsToTheRescue.com; #LendAPaw — donate supplies, or become a sponsor; Bark Week — a Barky & Sharky spoof of the The Discovery Channel's ever-popular Shark Week to promote shelter adoptions — www.barkweek.org; and Wings of Rescue donation campaign to raise money for a St. Tammany Parish/Tangipahoa Parish Transport.

To date, in 2020, over 451 animals were rehomed through compassionate, credible rescue group partnerships and 432 animals have been adopted directly from the Animal Shelter.  All animals who leave the shelter for adoption have a complete checkup, are spayed or neutered, microchipped, and vaccinated. The Department of Animal Services is open by appointment for anyone wishing to adopt and animal, or foster an animal to adoption. Call (985) 809-0183 to make an appointment, and visit,  www.stpgov.org/pets to view animals available for adoption.

Adoption hours at the Animal Services Shelter are Monday through Saturday from 10AM to 12PM and 1PM to 4PM.

 

Changes to August 2020 St. Tammany Parish BOA and Zoning Commission Meetings

Due to early voting for the Municipal General Election, the Board of Adjustments (BOA)  meeting scheduled for Tuesday, August 4, 2020, has been postponed. This meeting will now be held ahead of the September 1, 2020 BOA meeting. The August agenda will be at the start of the meeting, and the September meeting agenda will follow. In addition, also due to early voting, the start of August 4, 2020  Zoning Commission Meeting has been pushed back to 6:30 p.m. instead of 6 p.m. 

View the Board of Adjustments Agenda here
View the Zoning Commission agenda here

These meetings will be open to the public. Seating may be restricted due to COVID-19 capacity guidelines. Attendees will be required to wear a face mask or covering and will be required to submit to a temperature check before entering the Council Chambers.

Projects Slated to Move Forward as St. Tammany Parish Allocated Capital Outlay Funding

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper announced that St. Tammany Parish will see forward movement on several significant projects as 2020-2021 Capital Outlay Funding requests were approved by the State Legislature and signed by the Governor at the close of the 2020 First Extraordinary Legislative Session.

“I want to thank our legislative delegation for advocating for St. Tammany Parish and securing this funding,” said Mike Cooper, St. Tammany Parish President. “These funds will serve the people of St. Tammany through multiple uses, and we look forward to moving these initiatives forward.”

Capital Outlay funding requires a minimum 25 % local funding match.  Among the projects funded in the 2020-2021 year are: the South Slidell Levee Protection Project, the Training and Education Center on the Safe Haven Campus, and Phase II of the St. Tammany Fishing Pier.

The South Slidell Levee Protection Project will see $750,000 in Capital Outlay Funding. This multi-segment levee project is part of Louisiana’s Coastal Master Plan. It was developed by St. Tammany Parish Government and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as a levee plan concept to protect south Slidell east of Norfolk Southern railroad on both sides of I-10 by blocking a tidal surge produced in a 100-year storm event. The project includes five existing levees — four of which will require raising to match proposed elevations for the entire system, three already completed segments, and the proposed construction of 16 additional segments. The anticipated use of the 2020-2021 funding will include pre-design work as well as environmental permitting and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers clearance for levee work for segments 6, which would stretch between the already completed ring levees around Lakeshore Estates and the Kingspoint subdivision, and segments 7,12, and 13 which would stretch from the existing Kingspoint ring levee to U.S. 190. Learn more about the South Slidell Levee Protection Project here.

 

The Safe Haven initiative will see multiple campus improvements move forward through $850,000 in funding. A portion of this total — approximately $500,000 —will fund the construction of the 4,000 square-foot Training and Education Center. This facility will be the first new construction on the campus since 1970 — formerly Southeast Hospital — and will provide resources for a variety of programs centered on behavioral health. It will provide a space to train various community members on how to identify and respond to these community needs. This project has been designed and is expected to go out for bid in the fall of 2020. Construction is expected to be completed by late 2021. Additional projects slated for the campus include rehabilitation and renovation of existing buildings for expansion of behavioral health services. 

$390,000 in funding was approved for Phase II of the St. Tammany Fishing Pier Offshore project. This estimated total cost of project is $1.3 million, a portion of which will be funded through a grant from the Wallop Breaux Public Access and Boating Facility through Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries in the amount of $992,0458.50.  This project includes developing the old twin spans section of the Pier, currently closed to public use; shelter structures, cleaning stations and fishing platforms, as well as the installation of guardrails, a catwalk, and exterior lighting. This 120-day project is expected to go out for bid in the fall of this year.

Read ACT 2 of the 2020 First Extraordinary Legislative Session,  here.

 

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LDH to COVID-19 Testing Site, St. Tammany

Louisiana Department of Health Opens COVID-19 Mobile Testing Site in St. Tammany Parish
In Partnership with the Louisiana Department of Health, Office of Public Health and the Louisiana National Guard, COVID-19 testing will be available in St. Tammany Parish through a mobile COVID-19 testing site location in St. Tammany, Friday, July 17, 2020 at the St. Tammany Parish Fairgrounds, located at 1301 N. Columbia St. in the Covington area. The testing site will be open from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m. 

To be tested, residents must be at least 18 years old and have a valid Louisiana ID.  The site will use a self-administered nasal swab test that will allow those being tested to swab their own noses onsite while in their vehicles, observed by a trained medical volunteer to ensure the sample is taken correctly, and drop the sealed sample into a container on their way out of the drive-thru site. Those being tested will need to wear a mask and stay in their cars for verification of eligibility criteria, ID check and self-administered test. Walk up testing is not preferred due to safety concerns. 

Ochsner Testing Site Continues Through End of Week
Ochsner Health System continues to conduct COVID-19 testing in St. Tammany through Thursday, July 16, 2020 – Friday, July 17, 2020  at Celebration Church Slidell Campus, located at 1000 Caruso Blvd., Suite 201. The site opens at 9 a.m. Testing is open to Louisiana residents. You do not need to show symptoms to get tested.

Members of the community who wish to be tested should bring an ID and insurance card, if applicable. There are no out-of-pocket costs for those seeking a test and no one will be turned away based on their insurance status. Testing is available at the times listed or until all test kits have been utilized.

Testing schedules are subject to change due to weather.

DOTD: Road or Lane Status - I-12: US 190 TO LA 59

Road or Lane Status
ST. TAMMANY PARISH- I-12: US 190 TO LA 59

Wednesday, July 15, 2020 2:42 PM

ST. TAMMANY PARISH - I-12: US 190 TO LA 59
S.P. H.011152


From Monday, July 20, 2020 through Friday, July 24, 2020, there will be alternating left and right lane closures on US 190 (both East and West) at the I-12 Overpass. These closures will be from the hours of 8:00 PM to 6:00 AM, weather permitting. This is to allow the contractor to perform bridge demo operations.

One lane of traffic will remain open at all times.

There will be no vehicle restrictions and emergency vehicles will have access on US 190. Motorists may encounter a slight delay during this time.

There will also be a FULL RAMP CLOSURE for I-12 Eastbound as follows:

• On Thursday, July 23, 2020 and Friday, July 24, 2020, there will be a FULL RAMP CLOSURE of the I-12 Eastbound off-ramp to US 190 West (Exit 63B). This closure will be from the hours of 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM, weather permitting. This is to allow the contractor to mobilize equipment.

Detour Section
Motorists traveling I-12 EB wishing to exit US 190 West (Exit 63B) may take Exit 63A towards US 190 East and transition to US 190 West at Fairway Dr/Judge Tanner Blvd.

Safety Reminder
DOTD appreciates your patience and reminds you to please drive with caution through the construction site and be on the lookout for work crews and their equipment.

Project Contact
Lacey McCaskill, P.E.
Area Engineer East
St. Tammany and Washington Parish
985-871-8519
Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development
www.dotd.la.gov

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper Announces Plans for Mask Mandate

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper Announces Plans for Mask Mandate

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper announced today that based upon recommendations from St. Tammany Parish Coroner Dr. Charles Preston, as well as additional advisement from local physicians and healthcare professionals, he was preparing an Executive Order regarding masks for release Monday, July 13, 2020. As such, he will move forward with such an order on the heels of Governor John Bel Edwards announcement of additional restrictions to his Phase 2 Executive Order.

“My priority remains on focusing on the health and welfare of our citizenry while maintaining the viability of our economy. I have been urging residents to exercise personal responsibility and wear masks since early April, and I agree with the assertions of medical experts that face coverings may slow the spread of the coronavirus,” Cooper said. “With the help and cooperation of the eight mayors in St. Tammany Parish, we continue to drive home this message with the release of our public service announcement asking citizens to ‘Slow the Pace —Cover you Face.’ We will continue to do so as we know the simple act of covering your face may help protect others from our germs.”

Cooper will move forward with the planned Executive Order next week, and continues to ask all residents to do everything they can to stop the spread of COVID-19 including physically distancing, avoiding large crowds, washing hands frequently, and covering your face when in public around others.

See PSA here.

 

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St. Tammany Parish Government Awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting

St. Tammany Parish Government Awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting

St. Tammany Parish President Mike Cooper, announced today that the St. Tammany Parish Department of Finance has been awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting, by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada, for the 16th consecutive year.

“This recognition is reflective of the financial professionals who serve our community here in St. Tammany Parish Government,” said Mike Cooper, St. Tammany Parish President. “I want to thank them for their excellent work to provide our citizens with comprehensive financial information regarding our use of tax dollars.”

The Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by the government and its management. The comprehensive annual financial report, or CAFR, is evaluated every year by an impartial panel based on the high standards of the program, which includes demonstrating a constructive “spirit of full disclosure” to clearly communicate the Parish’s financial story and motivate potential users and user groups to read the CAFR.

Leslie Long, Chief Financial Officer, Annie Perkins, Assistant Director of Finance, and Laura Reine Lyons, Senior Accounting Manager, are the recipients named on the award.

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  • Administrative Complex
    21490 Koop Dr.
    Mandeville, LA 70471
    985.898.2700

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    Monday through Friday
    8:00am to 4:30pm