Concordia Fire District Two Fire Chief Nolen Cothren has hopes the Village of Ridgecrest’s fire rating will be lower than 10 after an inspection from the Property Insurance Association of Louisiana (PIAL).

Cothren made the announcement at the Village of Ridgecrest’s regular meeting Tuesday.

“I’m hoping for an eight (from a 10 rating),” Cothern said. “If they drop it by two points, they will come back in two years and do us again. Hopefully, we will have our water system fixed.”

PIAL is a private nonprofit association composed of all insurance companies licensed to write fire and certain coverages within the State of Louisiana.

Cothern and his team went through an extensive list in preparing for the future inspection. One weak point in Ridgecrest’s quest for a lower fire rating was its water system.

“We had some major problems with the water system,” Cothren said. “We can’t test the hydrants because they don’t have enough refill for the pressure. We could use all the water in two hours. Whenever you hook onto Ferriday, everything will be fine.”

Two weeks ago property insurance paperwork was turned into the Louisiana State Fire Marshal’s office for review, Cothren said.

“Ridgecrest should be inspected the same week they will be inspecting Ferriday,” Cothren said.

On another front, newly appointed Police Chief Thomas Goad wants to enforce the rules and laws much like an “old school law enforcer.”

“I want to make this community better and make myself a part of this community,” Goad said. “I love it here.”

Goad brings 31 years of experience to the Ridgecrest Police Department. Currently, he is a DARE and juvenile officer with the Concordia Sheriff’s Department. Additionally, he is a certified scuba diver and speaks Spanish.

“I make sure that every city street and every house sees that unit pass by,” Goad said. “There is no road we ignore.”

In his report to the council, Goad patrolled 55 hours in two-weeks of work in Ridgecrest. He gave out four citations, worked two traffic accidents and had one criminal arrest.

During the month of March, Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office caught a burglar and property was recovered, Goad said.

“I’d like to thank the sheriff’s office for providing the equity to provide patrols while I sleep,” Goad said.

Additionally in the meeting, aldermen voted to reimburse Alderwoman Rita Boyler’s mileage from the Louisiana Municipal Association’s conference from February.

In other business, council members amended an ordinance requesting residents put out their garbage cans for trash collection on Monday evening and remove them from the road no later than Wednesday morning.

Meanwhile, council members tabled a discussion of an amendment to ordinance 37C to add garbage collection to the water bills and a discussion on accountant Jeri-Sue Tosspon’s services.

Council members chose to hold a special meeting April 16 at 7 p.m. to discuss the matters when all members could be present.

Mayor Robert Maples, Alderwomen Boyler and Darlene Humphries were absent.

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