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The Concordia Parish Police Jury anticipates completion of Phase 1 of the Brushy Bayou Drainage Project by the end of September, which will clear the way for Phase 2 -- construction.

Jury Secretary-Treasurer Sandi Burley updated jurors on the project during their regular meeting Monday night.

Burley said the Jury has completed all paperwork and answered all questions asked by FEMA concerning Phase 1, which included permitting, rights of way and engineering.

The project, priced originally at $4.5 million, has increased to $7.4 million due to rising prices and design changes required by FEMA. The project has been in the works for close to a decade.

Fundedby a FEMA grant, the project was one of the last approved in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

It is designed to provide better drainage parishwide.

According to the Jury, work will include the installation of a gated box culvert in the Tensas River Levee where Brushy Bayou used to discharge. This will divert the Brushy Bayou discharge basin and a portion of the Buckner Bayou discharge basin into the Tensas rather than down Cocodrie Bayou.

According to engineers, this represents approximately 40 percent of the northern drainage area of the parish.

A weir will be installed just upstream of the box culvert to maintain water levels in Brushy at 43 feet. A bridge will be installed at Luke Martin Road to replace undersized culverts to allow increased Brushy flow to pass.

Engineers have estimated that water in the Vidalia Canal should be lowered by two feet when the project is completed.

In other action during the meeting Monday night, the Jury:

Amended the budget for the Health Unit in Ferriday to allow the agency to purchase a security system.

Approved an occupational license for Patriot Distributing (parts and supplies distribution), 329 Moose Lodge Road, Vidalia.

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