Reservoir debate remains heated

Published 6:22 pm Sunday, January 4, 2015

Dear Editor:

These are the facts!

The link below is the denial that the Vicksburg Corps of Engineers issued in 2009 that had been submitted by the Washington Parish Reservoir Commission.

Mr. Pierce stated in his recent letter to the editor, that we should submit our oppositions based on “facts not emotions.”

If you’ve read the denial you’ll find on item No. 1 the corps denial was based in large part on the “wetlands, cultural impact, threatened and endangered species and 65 property owners.”

Mr. Pierce, if emotion, as you stated, should not be considered, why did the corps consider them in the initial denial?

What have you changed to mitigate these findings by the corps — or the citizens of Washington Parish for that matter?

Have you made any attempt to mitigate the cultural impact, wetland and endangered species concerns by the corps and the citizens?

Item No. 2. – I quote: “to ensure that the full range of issues related to the proposed action would be addressed and all issues identified.”

You have failed (once again) to come to the citizens and assuage their concerns.

Item No.3. – I quote: “Due to substantial modifications to the originally submitted application” is another reason that is stated for the denial!

Mr. Pierce, you can’t have it both ways. You should have come to the people first on this issue.

By approaching this in the manner, it appears us that you have taken an adversarial position toward us. No wonder the citizens are understandably suspicious.

Where did you receive the funding to pay for the “site selection study, the preliminary report” and other expenses incurred by the WPRC? If you received these funds from the state, is not that a use of taxpayers’ money?

These are the facts, Mr. Pierce!

Next, we’ll take up the issue of land expropriation, eminent domain and gentrification.

Is this what is coming to our rural areas now?

Gentrification is a common and widespread controversial topic and term in urban planning. It refers to shifts in an urban community lifestyle and an increasing share of wealthier residents and/or businesses and increasing property values.

That may be a new term to a lot of you, but it would serve you well to research the results of these policies!

It’s being used all over the country and forcing poor people to leave the community because they can no loner afford the higher property taxes due to development.

Is this what they have in mind?


– Louise Rester Stewart

Dear Editor:

This is the real motive behind the proposed reservoir project!

Read between the lines of the recent comments Mr. Pierce has publicly made.

GENTRIFICATION (excerpted from link below): In a community undergoing gentrification, the average income increases. Poorer pre-gentrification residents who are unable to pay increased rents or property taxes are forced out. Gentrification often, if not always, includes a negative change of status for the existent population.

For a better understanding of gentrification, please do a Google search on it.


This, my fellow citizens is the true reason for the proposed project.

Garland Robinette has had a show on WWL radio addressing this very thing that’s occurring in New Orleans and all over the country.

In the end this will be nothing more than a land grab so they can enrich their coffers and invoke control over our lives.

That is, if we can afford to live here.

– Mark Stewart