St. Landry Parish President pushes for parish-wide library system

OPELOUSAS, La (KLFY) – In St. Landry Parish, the push to create a parish-wide library system continues.

Parish President, Bill Fontenot, says the original proposal to create a parish-wide library system was shot down by the parish council a few years ago, but that’s not stopping him from bringing the matter before the council once again.

“Millions of dollars would come to the parish as a result of this,” said Fontenot.

Fontenot speaks very passionately about creating and funding a parish-wide library system, which he says has been a personal goal of his since entering office.

“One could argue it is the most needed improvement in our parish,” said Fontenot.

Fontenot says St. Landry is the only parish that lags behind, because there isn’t a parish-wide library system.

He argues that it’s hard for people in rural areas of the parish to even get to a library.

“Those who are in the Palmetto, Melville, and Krotz Springs areas,” said Fontenot.

Fontenot says many of the libraries located within the parish are inadequately funded.

He says with the creation of the system everyone could get a piece of the pie.

“We will build a library system which will have smaller libraries in the rural areas and larger libraries possibly in the cities,” said Fontenot.

Fontenot says many of the states systems are supported by a parish-wide property tax, but stresses that it would be inexpensive to taxpayers.

“About the cost of a book per year,” said Fontenot.

With the new parish council in place, Fontenot believes that they will back him on this proposal.

“I think we have a more business minded, well-educated council now that is appreciative of a library system,” said Fontenot.

Fontenot says he will draft up a plan to bring before the council within the next couple of months, in order for the proposal to go on the ballot before voters within the next year.

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