- Associated Press - Friday, May 23, 2014

STERLINGTON, La. (AP) - The town of Sterlington showed the highest population growth of any municipality in northeastern Louisiana, according numbers released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The bureau estimates that Sterlington grew by 228 people from July 2012 to July 2013. Its total population is an estimated 1,889, an increase of 13.7 percent over last year’s population.

“It confirms what we know in Sterlington: We’re poised for massive amounts of growth,” said Sterlington Mayor Vern Breland.

Breland told The News-Star (https://tnsne.ws/1jKqcuu ) people are flocking to the town because of the good schools and easy access to large employers in Ouachita Parish. It’s expected to reach city status — 5,000 people — by 2017.

But Breland said with that growth, the town must prepare itself for growing pains. The elementary school is full, and the wastewater treatment plant will reach capacity in 10 years, though, it was built for 25 years.

Voters recently approved a $28.5 million bond issuance for the Ouachita Parish School District. Some of that money will be used to build three additional classrooms, two new restrooms, a computer lab and parking lot at the elementary school, as well as some expansion projects at the middle and high schools.

Breland said Sterlington will eventually produce its own water and it is already making additional investments in police, sewer and public works.

Sterlington had $11.1 million in new building permits last year.

“It’s been an amazing ride, and we’re not finished yet,” Breland said.

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Information from: The News-Star, https://www.thenewsstar.com


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