Posted: February 9, 2018

Minutes - Public Committee Meeting January 24, 2018


Town of Madisonville

403 St. Francis St.

Public Committee Meeting

January 24, 2018


CALL TO ORDER – Mayor Jean Pelloat

ROLL CALL – Wayne Morlier – All Present

PLEDGE – Councilman Hitzman


Committee Members:  Councilman Tim Bounds

                                     Councilman Chris Hitzman

1.                   Update on Pine St Park.

Mayor Pelloat reported that five oaks and 23 azaleas were planted this past week with assistance from Madisonville Jr High and that the project is approximately 95% complete.


Committee Members:   Councilman Chris Hitzman

                                     Councilman Brad Haddox

No discussion items.


Committee Members:         Councilman Brad Haddox

                                            Councilman Jim Bouey

Councilman Haddox read a letter from Ryan Richard supporting Abita Roasting Company’s request to be operate as a restaurant.

1.                   Request to change Riverfront Commercial Ordinance.

Councilman Haddox read a letter from Ryan Richard supporting Abita Company’s request to be approved as a restaurant.  Next, Mr. Brent Belsom, partner of Abita Roasting Café in Abita Springs and partner of Abita Roasting Company in Covington, made a presentation to support his request to operate as a restaurant. There was discussion between the Council and Mr. Belsom regarding specifics of proposed modifications to the existing structure to enhance the business operating as a restaurant. There was also discussion regarding special events and live music being played outside. It was agreed that any outside amplified music would be restricted and end by 10pm. Building Official, Jewell Chatellier, was asked about approvals for renovations to the existing building.  Mr. Chatellier stated that it would require a set of plans, floor layout, and fire requirements.  Upon opening the floor to the audience for comments, Mr. Mark Fisher, 701 Main Street, spoke stating that parking and traffic around his residence will be an issue if Abita Roasting is allowed to be a restaurant.  There was substantial discussion by the owners of Abita Roasting, Mr. Fisher and the Council regarding parking and traffic with the conclusion that parking requirements may increase by a maximum of 25 cars about 30 days a year. Next, Mr. Myron Bourg, 404 St. Tammany Street expressed his concerns that the owners may already be operating as a restaurant and outside music may not stop at 10pm as required by ordinance. The conclusion was that Abita Roasting is asking for an ordinance change so they can ensure they are operating within the law and that the Town would need to make sure the 10pm music ordinance is enforced so surrounding residents would not be affected. There was also discussion regarding Abita Roasting being a “good neighbor” and trusted business with the conclusion that the Mayors of Covington and Abita Springs speak highly of the businesses and that the existing foot print of the Madisonville location would not change.

Mr. Gorden Melloncamp suggested revising the ordinance as necessary to allow Abita Roasting to remain in Town as it is a focal point of the community where residents and others meet to socialize. 

Mr. Charlie Belsom asked if there can be a waiver to the ordinance to allow Abita Roasting to operate as a restaurant and if it ever closes then it would revert back to the present  status. Mr. Danner stated that this is not possible. Councilman Bounds asked if the seating capacity would remain at its present level of 32 and Mr. Brent Belsom stated yes.  Mayor Pelloat suggested Mr. Belsom meet individually with Councilman to gather feelings and thoughts.  The matter will also be added to the February 14, 2018 Council agenda. Mayor Pelloat also clarified that this matter is not a zoning change but is an ordinance change. 

2.                   Review ordinances in Town of Madisonville pertaining to square footage allowed in commercial and institutional building permits.

The Town’s Building Official, Mr. Jewell Chatellier was asked to speak to this item.  Mr. Chatellier stated he looked at ordinances in the surrounding municipalities, Folsom, Abita Springs, Mandeville, and Covington, He found that they all have limited ordinances addressing square footage but Mandeville is more active in not just building sizes but also design. After discussion, Councilman Doran asked Mr. Myron Bourg to get involved in studying the issue and offering suggestions. Mr. Chatellier suggested restricting building sizes in the Neighborhood Commercial District. Mayor Pelloat stated that Town ordinances have setbacks and height limitations that would restrict building sizes. Councilman Doran pointed to Friends and the Church new building proposal as being within ordinances but still too large.  There was discussion and opposing thoughts regarding the Church’s new building footprint and increase in square footage.  Councilman Doran suggested a committee to research.   


Committee Members:         Councilman Kevin Doran

                                            Councilman Tim Bounds

Public Comment Period:  members of the audience will have three (3) minutes to make a statement or express a concern.  (Anyone having or expressing a concern tonight may or may not get an answer due to the fact that the council is hearing the concern for the first time.   All statements will be considered and everyone will receive an answer in the near future).

Mr. Mark Fisher spoke about a public safety issue at the corner of St. Joseph and Main Streets where cars roll through the stop sign rather than actually stopping.  Mr. Fisher suggested speed bumps.  After discussion the consensus was that speed bumps are not feasible due to liability issues.  Councilmen Bounds and Bouey pointed out that the number of traffic tickets have increased during Interim Police Chief Mahne’s tenure as the new radar guns have been placed into operation and there are more patrols.  Patrolman Quatrevingt asked what times the violations are occurring so he could propose more patrols during those times.  Mr. Fisher stated 7 to 9 in the morning and 1 to 4 in the afternoon.


Motion made by Councilman Bounds to adjourn, seconded by Councilman Haddox, motion passed with all in favor.


Wayne C. Morlier

Town Clerk