In a letter distributed Wednesday to the Iberia Parish Council, attorney Gary McGoffin argues that the damages claim of Holly Leleux-Thubron will not likely hold weight in court; her attorney responded Thursday by filing a complaint in federal court.
Leleux-Thubron was hired by Parish President Errol “Romo” Romero in February 2012, shortly after he took the helm of Iberia Parish Government.
Leleux-Thubron’s termination came about six months later, when the council passed a resolution to pull funding from her position as a maintenance superintendent for the Public Works Department — a position for which she had no experience. At issue was Leleux-Thubron’s dual role; in addition to her work with the public works department, she also served as public/media relations for the parish president — a position in which she was experienced.
In the letter distributed during last week's council meeting, attorney McGoffin — hired by 16th Judicial District Attorney Phil Haney to litigate the potential lawsuit — writes:
The Employment Record section of Holly Leleux-Thubron’s employment application to the Iberia Parish Government confirms that she had no applicable employment experience required of a Maintenance Supervisor. Instead, she had been employed by LHC Group as a communications coordinator, The Daily Iberian as a reporter, and the Shadows on the Teche as an interpreter.
The Maintenance Supervisor position is funded by the Parish Wide Drainage Fund which is a restricted dedicated property tax for constructing, improving, maintaining or operating drainage facilities in the parish. Additional duties performed by Holly Leleux-Thubron at the direction of the Parish President were unspecified though paid by the Drainage Fund millage in contravention of that dedication.
The Council never requested nor required the termination of the Plaintiff, only that she be paid from non-dedicated funds for her services unrelated to the duties of a Maintenance Superintendent.
Leleux-Thubron's attorney, Mike Moity, responded by filing a complaint in federal court Thursday, which calls for a trial by jury. Moity argues that the council violated the parish’s Home Rule Charter and the personnel policy by approving the defunding of her position.
Thomas J. Landry, Troy F. Comeaux, Bernard Broussard, Glenn Romero, Ricky J. Gonsoulin, Roger Duncan, Jerome Fitch and Marty Trahan, individually and in their capacity as members of the Iberia Parish Council, in defunding [Leleux-Thubron’s] position, have manufactured a guise of budgetary concern ... but have showed deliberate indifference with respect to other employees of Iberia Parish Government who are similarly situated.
[Their] actions ... amount to a conspiracy to interfere with [Leleux-Thubron’s] civil rights ... and the deprivation of [her] rights were motivated by said ... animus towards [her] only, and no other parish employees who are similarly situated.
To post a comment, please log into your IND account. If you do not have an account, click the "register" button to create one. Facebook comments can be used as an alternative to creating an account at theIND.com.
DEC 12 Until recently, it seemed like NOLA Mayor Mitch Landrieu was going to skate to re-election. But John Maginnis writes in this post that he may face some unexpected opposition, from Michael Bagneris, who currently serves as a civil court judge for the city. The judge isn't saying he's thinking about it, because then he would have to step down, but let's just say Maginnis won't be surprised if Bagneris turns up to qualify for the job.
DEC 12 Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise, chair of the Republican Study Committee, has dumped the RSC's director, this post on Politico tells us. The director, Paul Teller, is accused of leaking conversations with lawmakers, the post says, and "actively working against" strategies that committee members had come up with. Hmmmm....
DEC 12 Jeremy Alford gives us the latest on David Duke in this LaPolitics post. Duke is back in the headlines because he was expelled from Italy recently, accused of trying to start a Neo-Nazi group there. Alford's pulled some interesting bits from the recent media coverage and some older pieces as well about this state embarrassment.
DEC 12 So Louisiana has one of the highest rates of HIV infection in the nation, we've known that for a while. But this Picayune story tells us about a new report by Human Rights Watch that says our laws and law enforcement practices are to blame. Those practices impact two routes to infection: unprotected sex and shared needles, the story says.
DEC 12 Jim Brown blogs about a book, "Dumbest Generation," and bemoans our inability to attain a more positive adjective. Jim wants to know: with our constant, unfettered access to information, why aren't we greater? He may be answering the question himself, urging more focus on community service and less on self-enrichment.
DEC 12 Here's an interesting post from DIG Baton Rouge about the proposed City of St. George in Baton Rouge. This piece focuses on the school district the organizers want to create. They're confident they won't need to raise taxes (because, of course, they'll be grabbing huge chunks of tax dollars -- or at least they think so) to build new schools, the story says.
DEC 12 After weeks of "political gimmicks" aimed at trying to force a vote on something most people really don't understand, Sen. David Vitter has decided he will do exactly what Sen. Mary Landrieu already has done for his own Congressional health insurance, the Advocate reports here. Senate leaders offered him a vote, but he didn't want it -- some say because he hadn't milked all the political juice out of this alleged issue yet.
DEC 12 The fact that "amateurs" are running the education system in Louisiana is hurting our children, blogger Mike Deshotels writes in this post. In support of his argument, he goes through the recent vote on Common Core in Baton Rouge, and explains what the data showed. It's not a pretty picture.
Read the Flipping Paper!
Click Here for the Entire Print Version of IND Monthly