- Associated Press - Saturday, May 31, 2014

STERLINGTON, La. (AP) - Mayor Vern Breland says hopes he will never see the day when he has to tell residents that Sterlington had less than a banner year.

For the past decade, Sterlington’s sales tax revenues, economic development and number of building permits issued have gone up each year. In his State of the Town address earlier this week, Breland attributes much of Sterlington’s success to Ouachita Parish schools and the developers who have helped create economic development.

“We still have a lot of commercial and residential development going on and issued $11.1 million in new building permits in 2013. I don’t know when it’s going to happen - I hope it’s when I’m out of office - when we have to say we actually didn’t beat the previous year,” Breland said.

Sterlington’s budget for 2014 is $1.8 million.

“That doesn’t sound like a lot of money, but in 2003 the total town budget was $360,000,” Breland said

The News-Star reports (https://tnsne.ws/1hH3RZx) that sales taxes rose from $375,000 in 2012 to $477,000 in 2013 and are projected to hit $545,000 this year.

“In six years our sales tax revenue has increased by almost 67 percent,” Breland said. “Things are remaining steady.”

One of the town’s continuing major projects is its new wastewater treatment plant, which would allow Sterlington to control its own water rates.

The town has spent $1.9 million on a new wastewater treatment plant, and another $700,000 on collection system improvements along U.S. 165. Estimated cost of the treatment plant is $8.4 million.

Sterlington has faced problems with handling new growth along the U.S. 165 business corridor because its collection system is closed - the town cannot tap into the pipes to connect new businesses.

“It’s vital to the growth of Sterlington both for our commercial and residential. We’re shooting to have our plant operational by June 2016,” Breland said.

When the new Sterlington Elementary School opened, the town’s sewer system hit maximum capacity, meaning the city wouldn’t be able to accommodate any new growth within its main business corridor.


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

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