Howell "Howie" Dennis is the news editor for The Crowley Post-Signal. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 337-783-3450.
The partnership between the Acadia Parish Assessor’s Office and Fenstermaker, a company that is on the cutting edge of the latest computer mapping technology, continues to pay dividends for the residents of Acadia Parish.
“A person can now obtain property information that used to take days to gather in a matter of minutes,” said Assessor James “Jimbo” Petitjean. “Pretty soon we’re going to be all electronic.”
The latest technological advancement that is now available to parish residents can be utilized by simply visiting the office’s website at www.acadiaassessor.org. After a few minutes watching Petitjean demonstrate the variety of information the website provides, one can’t help but be impressed.
To begin with, the website is relatively simple to operate. Simply go to the website, hit “MAPS” and agree with the disclaimer and you will instantly see a map of Acadia Parish pop up on your screen.
Those wishing to research any property in the parish can do so by clicking on “Parcels” at the top of the screen and typing any of the following: the property’s address, the owner of the property (last name first), the subdivision in which the property is located, the assessment number or the public land survey (section, township and range).
Once the property is brought up on the screen, it immediately displays the owner’s name as well as the owners of all the neighboring properties. Among the information that can be provided by a few clicks of the mouse are the parcel information, the property tax information, the property’s appraised value, the area’s flood zones, the area’s different soil types and elevation levels.
And that’s just the start.
“Say you want to open up a snow cone stand in a particular area of town,” said Petitjean. “You can use our system to see if there is a zoning variance which allows you to do so.
“The key to this is that it just makes things so much easier on our residents who used to have to travel here to get this information,” he added. “And the speed at which they can obtain it is such an advantage over the process that was formerly used.
“They are provided information on our website that often times used to require seeing two or three different people.”
Petitjean said that getting the system up and running required some help from the Acadia Parish Clerk of Court’s Office.
“Robby Barousse has been very cooperative throughout the entire process,” he said.
Petitjean credits Fenstermaker, a company based in Lafayette, with designing the website’s technology and his staff for helping his office to implement it. And, as he points out, Acadia is only the third parish in the state to have the technology.
Apparently, for the affable Petitjean, there is only one drawback to the system.
“I enjoy visiting with the people who come into our office,” he said. “Now there won’t be as many.”