Qualifying begins today for the special election, to be held April 4, for the District 6 city-parish council seat. So far, only one candidate, Sam Dore, has announced intentions to run. Dore, who works for Goodyear tires, ran unsuccesfully for the seat in 2007, garnering 35 percent of the vote. “I said then, in four years, I’d be running again,” Dore says. “Then [former councilman] Bruce [Conque] resigned and it just kind of upped the time frame for it.” Dore previously ran for the seat as a Democrat but recently switched to the Republican Party. Dore says he has always been a conservative and has found himself increasingly out of step with the Democratic Party. He says the politics of District 6, which has trended conservative, did not play a part in his decision. When asked what issues he plans to make a top priority, Dore re-iterated the theme he championed in his 2007 campaign, bringing unity to the council. “Just working with the council and moving Lafayette forward,” Dore says. “We’ve said it before, District 6, there’s not any big road projects in it, there’s not going to be any big building projects in it. It’s already built out but District 6 supports the whole parish.”
Several others considered likely candidates for the race say they will not be qualifying this week. Parish Republican Party official Denise Skinner says she is not running; the same goes for attorney Judy Kennedy. “I very seriously considered running,” Kennedy says, but adds that professional obligations prevent her from taking the time required to wage a campaign. “It’s strictly a time limitation.” Jaci Russo, a senior partner of the The Russo Group ad agency, is another name that has more recently emerged. Russo says she is considering, her main reservation being a potential move her family is considering that would place her residence outside the district. “I’ve grappled with the decision,” Russo says, noting she would like a female voice on the council. “I’m not ruling anything out.”
David Calhoun and Elizabeth “EB” Brooks are the first two employees of Lafayette Central Park Inc., the nonprofit charged with turning Lafayette Consolidated Government’s 100-acre Johnston Street Horse Farm property into a passive public park. Calhoun was named executive director, and Brooks is director of planning and design.
There will soon be a whole lot of shakin’ going on at Benny’s Sportshack Supplement Depot, a new concept by Opelousas native Benny Nele. Located at 2002 Johnston St., the supplement shop, smoothie bar and café, featuring hot off the press paninis and wraps, plans to open in late May.