During my leadership class, we looked at cities thought of as well managed, like Portland, Ore., Austin, Texas, and others that have used smart growth or some variation of strategic planning to improve their residents' quality of life. Despite all of the positive aspects of the developments in those cities, at the end of the day, the means of achieving those conditions (like Lincoln's aggressive zoning and development laws) were dismissed as liberal ideas and therefore "not gonna happen" in Lafayette. In City-Parish President Joey Durel's words, parish-wide zoning is "â?¦ probably not even worth talking about." Therein lays the problem.
Dr. Kam Movassaghi said, "It takes leadership," and I agree with that, but not in the form of deciding to pay more taxes to improve our roads. I think it takes leadership to open your mind and use proven methods to solve public problems. If a private entity is denied a permit for a development because it would create additional demand where the infrastructure is already insufficient, wouldn't that be in the public's best interest? I realize private demand is often ahead of public investment in infrastructure. In such cases, there should be conditional approval to allow new developments but require private funding of infrastructure improvements as part of the new developments. Otherwise, it takes the political will to insist that new developments are made where the infrastructure exists to support it.
We have a consolidated government, with departments of traffic and transportation, public works, planning, zoning and codes, and they are all vital functions of government. Parish-wide zoning, a comprehensive land use plan or some type of master plan for "smart growth" is definitely worth talking about if infrastructure is considered a factor in our quality of life in Lafayette. We need to employ our public resources in ways that serve the public's best interest. Sometimes that may mean you have to say no to somebody's big money deal, or we can just learn to live with growing pains.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, March 07, 2014:
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
State lawmakers will not appeal a judge's ruling that it was improper to use $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers' retirement fund to balance the state's operating budget.
Conservatives have been losing their minds over this satirical bit on the Colbert Report.
The Lafayette Parish School Board leaves a lot to be desired, but is scrapping the election process in favor of an appointed board the answer?
The House approved legislation Tuesday night to roll back a recently enacted overhaul of the federal flood insurance program, after homeowners in flood-prone areas complained about sharp premium increases.
The NFL has formally designated New Orleans' Jimmy Graham as a tight end for the purposes of his franchise tag value, which is now set at $7.05 million next season unless Graham and the Saints subsequently agree on a long-term deal.
A federal appeals panel ruled Monday that businesses don't have to prove that they were directly harmed by BP's 2010 Gulf Of Mexico oil spill to collect settlement payments.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development has closed Interstate 10 from I-49 in Lafayette to Seigen Lane in Baton Rouge.
Jim Bernhard, who engineered the sale of The Shaw Group for $3 billion, recently has told several people involved in Democratic politics that he intends to run for governor in 2015.
A New Orleans levee board wants to hold the oil and gas industry accountable for decades of damage to our state’s coastline, but the Legislature may be poised to put the kibosh on the suit.
New standards curb elective induction
CVS stops tobacco sales
If an Acadia Parish fiddler misses a note while swatting a fly, will a St. Martinville accordionist learn “Ma ‘Tite Fille”?
(It's good, it's bad and it's just crazy)