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St. Landry

Town of Washington Optimistic in Wake of Financial Woes

“There are no surplus funds, we’re just excited when we can make payroll.”

With a town deficit of $600,000 Washington Mayor Dwight Landreneau says paying current bills and town employees is an accomplishment.

“We are looking at every penny,” said Landreneau. “We meet on a daily basis to look at our payables, we’re looking daily on our income that we get from the gas, the water, electricity.”

While the town deficit has taken years to incur, Landreneau says it’s partly due to several mistakes made in the past.

“The accounting, the record of accounting, the way bills were paid, the way collections were made,” said Landreneau.

Many residents around town have stepped in to help the town while in its financial crisis.

“I love my little town,” said Washington resident and Town Hall volunteer Anne Jones. “Washington’s my home , it’s always been my home and all of us want the town to succeed and we are working very hard to make that happen.”

“We have a great group of volunteers who has stepped up,” said Landreneau. “We have one volunteer who works 40 hours a week at absolutely no income.”

While town leaders work with agencies to establish payment plans for debts and look for grants, Landreneau say’s he optimistic about Washington’s future.

“We have encouragement now, we have courage and that’s important.”