By Rebekah Allen
St. George supporters celebrated a major victory Sunday evening when they announced that enough signatures have been collected to put the proposal to create their own city in the southern part of the parish to a vote of the people.
“Everyone who said we’d never get the required number of signatures to put this on a ballot was wrong,” Lionel Rainey, a St. George spokesman, said Sunday shortly after the announcement was made. “We just climbed a hill that virtually everyone said was unclimbable.”
However, Rainey also was cautious.
“The fight is nowhere near over,” he said.
Petitions as of Sunday had 17,750 signatures, he said. The group was informed last week by the East Baton Rouge Parish Registrar of Voters that it needed exactly 17,746 signatures from residents within the proposed area.
Only voters who live within the proposed boundaries of St. George will be allowed to weigh in on the decision to incorporate.
St. George would include more than 100,000 residents living in about 80 square miles of the southern part of the parish, south of the city of Baton Rouge.
The push to create a new city began more than a year ago and was born from the desire to create a separate school system.
St George, LA Update – 8/25/14