Louisiana National Guard soldiers worked in Ponchatoula Cemetery over the weekend to saw and remove large trees that were uprooted by Hurricane Ida.

Mayor Bob Zabbia said Friday he has also been working with Lance Vicknair of Harry McKneely Funeral Home to address specific issues at the cemetery. 

Mayor Zabbia also announced that in light of the disaster, the City of Ponchatoula is waiving all fees for storm-related building permits. However, people still need to file a permit with the city for construction. 

"Please contact City Hall so that we can protect home owners by double checking the license of your contractors," he said.

Until further notice, City Hall will be open daily 9 a.m. to noon to handle permits.

Entergy continues to make noticeable progress throughout the city, the Ponchatoula mayor said. He reminded residents that before Entergy workers arrive it's important to have an electrician reconnect any meters that Ida tore from homes. 

Debris removing is ongoing in Ponchatoula.

City officials have placed a cell charging station that looks like a refrigerator size cabinet near the front entrance of City Hall. Available hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

"You can plug in your phone (two even), lock the box and come back to get your phone later," he said. 

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