A longstanding property dispute between Lafayette and Vermilion Parishes has come to a head in recent weeks. The dispute is over the nearly 700 acres of land that lies between the two parishes that has been a point of controversy since Vermilion Parish was formed in 1844. Lafayette City-Parish President Joey Durel joined “Mornings with Ken and Bernie” for his weekly “Lafayette Live” segment to discuss the dispute and explain why the border between the two parishes is still not clearly defined over 150 years later.

"I don't know if it's a 'dispute' yet," clarified Lafayette's City Parish President. "The reason why I question it being called a dispute, is because I think both sides really just want the truth. The question is how close can you get accurate information to 1844."

Durel says the confusion stems from the original interpretations of the border which used landmarks like, "John Doe's tree" to define the boundary. Changes to the physical landscape of the region have led to sustained confusion 150 years later.

In 2002, LCG and the Vermilion Parish Police Jury agreed to survey the boundary, but Durel believes the results of the survey, while based on accurate information at the time, are not inline with the original 1844 boundary.

They seem to have new definitive information that shows that maybe what happened back in 2002 isn't exactly accurate. Isn't the best and most useful information, so it may not be a dispute. - Joey Durel

Durel admits that while the amount of land in question is not much in terms of the grand scheme, but for the people that live in the area this issue is very important.

I think the totality of it is just at or right under 700 acres. In the big picture it's not a lot of property, but for the people who are involved with it, it's whether they pay taxes on this side or that side, it's where their kids go to school, it has a big impact on a few people. - Joey Durel

The City-Parish President believes recently uncovered information, including minutes from the meetings that defined the original border, will help uncover the 1844 border, which Durel feels will satisfy both sides of the dispute.

To listen to the full audio, click the play button below: