The St. Martin Parish Council has decided to appeal the judge’s decision that’s allowing the Champagne’s Cajun Swamp Tours to continue operating off of Lake Martin.
“We support removing this operation from the lake.” said Jacob Michael Guillory who owns the property right next to Champagne’s Cajun Swamp Tours.
He feels the business is hurting the integrity of the lake.
“The septic tank is flowing into the lake so all that human waste is flowing into the lake, that’s why the water is so green right here of algae.” said Guillory.
The St. Martin Parish Government is arguing that the business is also violating its zoning laws.
“No one has the right to construct any kind of structure for any kind of commercial activity on that lake.” said Parish President Chester Cedars.
Cedars explained the judge ruled in favor of the business remaining on the lake because of a clerical error that allowed them to get the permit in the first place.
He added that the judge said they had been operating for several years before the st. Martin parish government took any action.
“It’s not unreasonable. I think its incorrect. An administrative error can not be the basis for changing a zoning ordinance period.” said Cedars.
For Guillory, not only does the business pose a risk to the environment but also of all of its neighbors.
“If that man is going to continue sit there and hold an alcohol. We’re liable so we are concerned about the public coming in, getting hurt and dragging us into a lawsuit and possibility losing our property.” said Guillory.
Attorneys representing Champagne’s Cajun Swamp Tours were present at the council meeting but did not make any public comment.