During the recent Hurricane Alicia exercise in Baker, a drill for evacuating New Orleans evacuees living in trailers was cancelled because state and federal officials couldn't decide which agency should issue the evacuation order. The Advocate reported that dozens of volunteers and emergency management officials were in place and waiting at the Renaissance Village trailer park for hurricane evacuees ' for more than 5 hours ' before local officials finally called it off.
Both Jo Anne Moreau, director of the East Baton Rouge Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, and Police Chief Sid Gautreaux cancelled the drill. Moreau reportedly stated, "This was not a failure to act. What we had was a failure at a higher level to make a decision."
Mark Smith, spokesman for the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness admitted that there was "a disconnect" and said his office was looking into why it happened. ' R. Reese Fuller
CHRIS WILLIAMS HIRE UNPOPULAR WITH LTC FACULTY
Lafayette City-Parish Councilman Chris Williams' approval rating from faculty members at the campuses he oversees appears to be in the tank. Williams was recently promoted to the newly created position of regional director ' part of an administrative streamlining of the state's community and technical college system ' but another candidate was the overwhelming favorite among members of the eight-campus faculty senate.
For the past five years, Williams has served as vice chancellor of the Louisiana Technical College's Acadiana region, a position that has been eliminated, but faculty members wanted the dean of the Lafayette campus, Phyllis Dupuis, to direct their institutions.
Jerrylene Fontenot, who teaches at the Charles B. Coreil campus in Ville Platte and is president of the faculty senate for Region IV (the Acadiana area), says of the 129 votes cast, there were 13 abstentions, 11 votes for Williams and a whopping 105 for Dupuis. "The vote just came out very lopsided," she says. The senate then sent the results to Dr. Walter Bumphus, president of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System, but was aware its vote may not influence the outcome. "I think they were hoping it would," notes Fontenot, "but we knew it was not part of the selection process. The faculty wanted an opportunity to voice an opinion."
Williams did not respond to a call for comment by press time.
Fontenot also served on the committee that interviewed the four candidates for the position and forwarded the top two applicants, Williams and Dupuis, to Bumphus.
Bumphus, who had the authority in naming the new regional director, recommended Williams to the system's board of supervisors, and the board approved his choice.
"There are a lot of people disappointed that it wasn't Phyllis," says Fontenot, who declined to speculate on Bumphus' decision. "I really hate to get into that."
Bumphus, who is recovering from surgery, could not be reached for comment. ' Leslie Turk
"I am extremely disheartened by the political machines that are attempting to hijack my efforts along with others that advocate for children."
Landrieu, who is fighting to keep her seat for a fourth term, said that Ebola is serious and precautions should be taken, but she accused Republicans of using the virus outbreak in West Africa to "create fear" here at home.
Law enforcement agencies are participating in a "Louisiana Heroin Summit," designed to address the recent rise in heroin use and drug-related deaths around the state.
State education officials are preparing to release performance scores for public schools and public school districts.
Saints coach Sean Payton is starting a new week by emphasizing, repeatedly, the many good things he noticed during New Orleans' latest loss.
Tuesday's Blogs from the Bog!
Oscar de la Renta dies; Pistorius sentenced; World Series begins and more national and international news for Tuesday, October 21, 2014.
We will be offering our recommendations on the constitutional amendments tomorrow.
The justices did not comment in leaving in place lower court rulings that dismissed the lawsuits against BP and other companies involved in the worst U.S. offshore oil spill.
White registration is down by 7,700 voters while black registration has shot up by 7,100 voters.
Even though it had been rumored for months, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu finally pulled the trigger recently on a major campaign shakeup that moved control over to a few Big Easy insiders.
Louisiana's health department says it will seek law changes to stop billing sexual assault victims for exams and tests.
It wasn’t the historic slashes to higher ed funding or the ensuing tuition spikes that recently had LSU’s student body and faculty riled up in collective outrage.
Will $400 be enough for the re-election campaign of LPSB's Hunter Beasley to overcome two years of holding our school system hostage and hurting the education of our children all because of a personal dislike of the superintendent?
Saints tight end Jimmy Graham said Friday he expects his playing status in Detroit to be decided by coach Sean Payton on Sunday, shortly before the game.
Lawmakers have sidestepped a decision on whether they accept claims from Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration that the state closed last year's books with a nearly $179 million surplus.
Coming off the high of a fourth quarter comeback against Tampa Bay and a helpful bye week, linebacker Junior Galette sees a real turnaround coming for New Orleans' struggling defense.
Former President Bill Clinton, the Democratic Party's most popular surrogate this fall, is heading to Louisiana early next week for a campaign rally with U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu.
Time and again you hear people say DA Mike Harson is unbeatable because he's doled out political favors over the past 20 years. But a new lawsuit could end that speculation.
After the season's signature win (so far), here are some helpful tips for Cajun Nation during the conference stretch.
Did the state close last year's books with a surplus or a deficit?
Practicing without limitations on Wednesday, running back Mark Ingram looked ready to return to a New Orleans offense that once again ranks among the NFL's best when the Saints play at Detroit on Sunday.
It’s been decided: Superintendents of Louisiana’s public school system will retain the controversial powers granted by Act 1 of the 2012 session.
Louisiana Treasurer John Kennedy has a bone to pick with the Jindal administration, which recently — surprise! — announced that the state ended the most recent budget year with a $178.5 million dollar surplus.
The messaging battle, however, isn't tied to individual campaign accounts. Third-party groups have poured millions of dollars into advertising.