Breaux Bridge — Litigation or no litigation, asbestos or no asbestos, owners of the old Domingues Motors building downtown have 30 days to come up with a timetable for tearing it down or face yet another lawsuit — this one from the city.
Time has already run out on a threat by the council, made last August, to seek an order of abatement in district court — essentially suing to force the owners to tear down the crumbling former auto dealership. But Mayor Jack Dale Delhomme last week urged patience.
“Do we want to hammer two guys, two families, that we know personally?” Delhomme asked. “Be careful what you want to do to our people.”
Local owners Kip Lastrapes and Randy Rees have claimed they are stymied by a suit filed by a third owner from out of town and by the discovery of asbestos in the building.
“What’s another 30 days when we’ve been fighting this since 2005,” said Councilman Glenn Angelle, in whose district the building sits.
“That’s the problem,” said Councilman Albert “Da Da” Menard, voicing a strong sentiment on the council.
“It’s your district and I’ll follow your lead, but when it comes to my district, I’m going to ask you to swallow the pill.”
Councilman Terry Thibodeaux said it is difficult to force others to clean up their properties as long as an eyesore remains standing across the street from city hall.
Councilman Gary “Bimmie” Champagne complained that his requests for documentation of the asbestos issue have not been met.
The issue will be on the March agenda, Delhomme said.