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COMMUNITY LEADERS

Mike Cooper St. Tammany Parish President

The year 2020 presented us with many challenges, testing our fortitude, willingness and determination to overcome COVID-19. Now, halfway through 2021, we are moving forward with our return to normalcy. Today, as more citizens take advantage of vaccinations, our hospitalizations are steadily decreasing and our percent positivity rates remain under 2%. After a year of strict requirements, through the hard work of our citizenry, we were able to safely lift the mask mandate. Though not completely out of the woods yet, our communities have worked diligently to heed the advice of our healthcare professionals, and I am confident they will continue to help us make progress. We recently launched the St. Tammany Rental Assistance Program, which utilizes $7.7 million in CARES Act funding from the Department of Treasury. The program is available to assist households that are unable to pay rent and utilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. More information may be found at www.stpgov.org/departments/grants. Another notable improvement comes from the Department of Animal Services. In my first year as Parish President, our Animal Services’ Live Release Rate increased by 30%, from 55% to 85%. This year, in our first quarter, we achieved a 95% Live Release Rate. This is not just an accomplishment for Animal Services, but for our entire community. Even in the face of a global pandemic, St. Tammany Parish continues to make the welfare of our animals a priority. As we move into the second half of 2021, we are steadfast in keeping up the pace of providing services for the benefit of our citizens. We have numerous projects in the works to create jobs, improve our infrastructure, and increase our overall quality of life. It has been my main focus to keep us moving forward, while balancing the health of our community with the health of our economy. We look forward to the remainder of 2021 as we complete our current projects and start new initiatives to continue serving the citizens of St. Tammany Parish.

Here in Southeast Louisiana we are entering what is commonly referred to as the “Dog Days of Summer.” While it may feel unbearably hot standing outside during an average Louisiana summer afternoon – it is significantly hotter inside a parked car. Thirty-eight children die on average in the United States every summer due to being left in hot cars. There are ways to prevent these tragedies from occurring. Here are four simple methods to help remind you a child is in the backseat of your car. Randy Smith St. Tammany Sheriff

• Set an alarm on your phone to go off about the time you get to work each day. The alarm will jolt you out of auto-pilot and remind you to check your back seat. • Put your purse or wallet in the backseat. If your scheduling has changed at the last minute for some reason, because of habit you will look for your purse or wallet before exiting the car. • Put the child’s diaper bag in the front seat with you. By placing the diaper bag in the front seat you have a visible cue when you’re getting out of the car. • When your child is not in the car seat, put a stuffed animal in it. When you place your child in the car seat move the stuffed animal to the front seat as a visible cue. These are just a few of the many ways to remind yourself there is a child in the backseat.

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As an added reminder, the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office has printed stickers for local businesses and offices to place on their front doors as a reminder to customers and employees to stop and make sure they didn’t forget their child or pet in the back seat. To get one of these stickers for your business/office, contact the Sheriff’s office by emailing your business name, address and contact information to victoriaowens@stpso.com. EDGE June | July 2021

Profile for EDGE of the Lake

Edge of the Lake Magazine June | July 2021  

EDGE of the Lake gives a fresh edgy look at the parishes north of the lake and the unique people that make up our community. Expect the unex...

Edge of the Lake Magazine June | July 2021  

EDGE of the Lake gives a fresh edgy look at the parishes north of the lake and the unique people that make up our community. Expect the unex...

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