After nearly 50 years in business, Hamilton's Place hosted its last dance on Sunday night. Hundreds of dancers packed into the dance hall and spilled out onto the porch and the parking lot to dance to the music of Geno Delafose & French Rockin' Boogie, along with Keith Frank and the Soileau Zydeco Band. William Hamilton's father opened the nightclub ' sometimes called the Hamilton Club ' on Verot School Road in 1956.
Hamilton says it's become increasingly difficult to make a living with the dance hall, citing dwindling crowds and increasing expenses. In January, due to rising insurance premiums, the club stopped serving alcohol. Hamilton wants to sell the club, but says the owner would have to move the building off of the Hamilton family's property. ' RRF
MALL OF ACADIANA HAS BUYER
Mum was still the word at press time Monday afternoon from officials at the Mall of Acadiana, but a source close to the mall confirms that a deal is on the table to sell the 26-year-old shopping center to CBL & Associates Properties of Chattanooga, Tenn.
Katie Knight, director of investor relations for CBL, a real estate investment trust, also would not release any information on the pending sale. CBL is a REIT listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The company primarily owns regional malls like the Mall of Acadiana that are the dominant retail facility in middle market areas.
The 1.1 million-square-foot Mall of Acadiana is owned by Robert B. Aikens & Associates of Troy, Mich. Lafayette developer Dwight Andrus Jr. began working on the mall project seven years before the mall opened, securing the land and commitment from anchor tenant Sears. "Realizing I was small compared to the enormity of that business, what I did was seek a partner," Andrus says. "I knew I needed help." Andrus sold his interest to Aikens in the late 1990s. ' LT
CAILLIER PLEADS NOT GUILTY
Larry Caillier's arraignment last Friday could mark the beginning of a long line of court dates for the veteran Opelousas Police Chief. On Wednesday, June 22, a St. Landry Parish grand jury was set to reconvene to consider more state charges against Caillier. The grand jury will likely be considering evidence from a state auditor's report issued in January that identified more than $200,000 of funds and equipment that went unaccounted for in the department from 2000 to 2003. In May, the grand jury indicted former Opelousas Police Maj. Ronnie Trahan on 17 counts stemming from the audit report including criminal conspiracy, payroll fraud and money laundering. Last Friday, Caillier's attorney, Elbert Guillory, entered Caillier's written plea of not guilty for five state charges of malfeasance. The charges allege that Caillier ordered his officers not to respond to calls about fights breaking out at a Battle of the Bands event that sheriff's deputies were supplying security for. A pretrial trial hearing for that case is set for Sept. 29. ' NS
A preliminary ruling in the lawsuit filed by Iberia Parish Government against Mosquito Control Contractors Inc. has reduced the contract length between the parish and MCCI from five years to three ("Foggy Contract Breakdown," June 1). Based on a request by Assistant District Attorney Wayne Landry for summary judgment, the court found that the contract for 2003 through 2008 was in violation of the parish's home rule charter, which only allows a three-year term. The contract for mosquito spraying is now scheduled to end on April 30, 2006, unless MCCI appeals. Meanwhile, the trial, based on issues of overfilling and CPI misapplication, which was scheduled to begin on June 7, has been continued until Aug. 10. ' MT
So far the Democratic agenda includes proposals to expand Medicaid; increase the minimum wage; offer equal pay to women; heighten regulations on predatory lending practices, like payday loans; and add more transparency in the governor’s office.
Hot-button education issues ranging from Common Core to charter schools have some lawmakers pushing to scrap the appointing process and go back to electing the state's super.
Police say the handcuffed man fatally shot himself in the back, but his family isn't buying the story.
Gov. Bobby Jindal offered a budget proposal that suggests new education and health care spending, pay raises for state workers and an incentive fund to encourage colleges to enhance their science, engineering and technology training.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday, March 11, 2014:
Hopefully he’ll be better prepared today than he was in that Feb. 20 deposition.
They came by the hundreds, arriving from all regions of the state to gather on the steps of our Capitol in protest of the Legislature’s long tradition of giving industry the go-ahead to abuse our air, our water and our coastline, all in the name of good economics.
Gov. Bobby Jindal’s recent rhetoric against President Barack Obama has failed to boost his standing among the conservative base.
Louisiana's annual legislative session begins.
The state has hired marksmen to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at two wildlife management areas in south Louisiana.
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.
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.