According to the Times-Picayune, the St. Bernard Parish Council passed an ordinance last week detailing exactly what a truck stop must include. City officials feared that truck top operators would set up poker parlors with only a small amount of trucking related facilities in order to earn the video poker revenue. Officials say the goal of the ordinance is to allow only legitimate truckstops into the area, ones that would be likely to stay in business whether or not they received much revenue from video poker.
The new parish law is stricter than Louisiana state law, requiring that new truckstops have 10 contiguous acres of developed land, instead of 5 acres, along with a 20-foot landscaped buffer zone. Truckstops must be at least 500 feet away from a residential zoning district, school, church, park or recreation area. New facilities are also required to have parking for 100 vehicles, be located next to a major highway, and offer food, fuel and other trucking-related services, such as a 24-hour, sit-down restaurant for at least 50 people.