Blighted properties are not only unsightly but can also be unsafe for communities.

Abbeville now has an increased means to help take care of this issue around the city, thanks to a $250,000 grant.

During its regular council meeting last week, the City Council adopted a resolution granting the authority to the Mayor to sign and submit all necessary documents along with adopting certain policies, plans & procedures in connection with the Fiscal Year 2019 Louisiana
Community Development Block Grant (LCDBG) program for the slums and blight program.

Richard Minvielle of Minvielle & Associates, Inc., who serves as the city’s grant writer, discussed the program during the meeting.

“The city was recently awarded a $250,000 federal grant,” Minvielle said.

“The purpose of the program is primarily to demolish and clean up blighted, condemned properties in the city.”

Minvielle said this is a pilot program. “This is the first year the state has awarded such grants,” he said.

“Over the years, the mayor and others have talked to different people about the issues that they have cleaning up these properties.

“The state selected Abbeville to be a part of this program.” Minvielle told the council that 23 properties in the city have been identified.

“I don’t think any will be demolished until more toward theend of the year,” Minvielle said. “There are the processes that have to be gone through to do that.”

The good news, local tax payers are not carrying the burden for this program.

“That is the good news,” Minvielle said.

Property owners will retain ownership of the properties once the demolishing and cleanup is complete.

Originally published in the Abbeville Meridional, June 10, 2020