City-Parish President Joey Durel is asking Lafayette Housing Authority board member Leon Simmons to step down after learning of Simmons’ aggressive action toward local media at the LHA office Monday morning.
Simmons, the board member who represents LHA residents, pushed a KLFY TV10 videographer’s camera when the station was covering the story of LHA Executive Director Walter Guillory’s and Deputy Director Jonathan Carmouche’s resignations Monday. The station was filming Guillory as he walked to his car (while being questioned by Daily Advertiser reporter Claire Taylor) to leave the LHA’s premises. Despite Guillory’s pleas for him to not intervene, Simmons persisted, calling the reporters “some buzzards, some damn buzzards” before throwing down his drink and walking away. The station did not air the controversial footage in its coverage yesterday but did run it at 5 p.m. today. View the video here.
“After hearing about the incident, I intend on asking him to step down,” Durel told The Independent Weekly Tuesday afternoon.
Simmons, who fought to get his board position back after Durel dismissed him and four others in mid-August after a critical audit of the LHA, has also been under fire for driving residents of LHA’s programs around in an LHA-owned van. An LHA volunteer, Simmons uses the van for such services as delivering meals and shuttling elderly LHA clients to casinos. Yes, casinos.
At a board meeting this afternoon, which Simmons attended along with John Freeman and Joe Dennis, the board authorized Freeman to sign checks for the LHA until an interim executive director is named. The board, however, cannot spend any money without the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's authorization.
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 8 - Maybe that wasn't such a good idea, after all. This post on the Louisiana Oil & Gas Association's site says we're looking at oil prices that are tanking because there's so much oil coming out of the Gulf. Some are even predicting a glut. What's likely to be the result? Lower gas prices, higher refinery profits, and more pressure on the feds to loosen export restrictions.
DEC 8 Here's the latest from blogger Robert Mann, and it's on one of his favorite topics: Bobby Jindal. He's taking a look at Jindal's record and his current maneuvering, which of course is a ploy to position him for a run for the White House. "America Next," Jindal's current big idea, is just as vague about what it is proposing as Jindal usually is, Mann says. And it won't protect him from his "unimaginative record," as Mann describes it.
DEC 8 - Don't know what that is? Then run on over to LaPolitics and read this post by Jeremy Alford, which serves as a history lesson about the famed tonic and it's purveyor, Dudley LeBlanc. It's really a fascinating story and Alford's description of Dudley as an "icon of Louisiana politics and culture" is not an exaggeration.
DEC 8 In this editorial, the Picayune again urges Gov. Jindal to take the Medicaid money. But the piece's exhortation that Jindal "be sensible" is a little misplaced, isn't it? Because Jindal's not being stupid -- well, maybe he is -- but he's following orders from people he believes can get him into the White House. This editorial is engaging in the argument that Jindal is publicly making, without acknowledging what his true motivations are. Somebody send these guys a clue.
DEC 8 Columnist Mark Ballard is writing about the impact of Vance McAllister's defeat of Neil Riser in this post. He starts out talking about how McAllister's more reasonable approach was more attractive to voters than was Riser's hard-line (tea-party-ish) rants. Dan Claitor, a state lege from BR who is expected to run for Congress soon, expressed it best when he said voters aren't looking for candidates who are "throwing temper tantrums when they can't get their way."
DEC 8 It's always gratifying when a Louisiana son makes international headlines. And our son, David "former KKK grand poobah" Duke is back in the news, making us all proud. This (UK) Telegraph story, unearthed by the Dead Pelican, tells us that Duke has been expelled from Italy but is trying to return. The Italians say he is trying to "establish a pan-European, extremist neo-Nazi group in northern Italy." Huh. You don't say.
DEC 9 This is a kind of puzzling post from columnist Jim Beam, in which he discusses a recent appearance by former Gov. Edwin Edwards in Lake Charles. He said he's surprised by EWE's "grasp of current events." Did Jim never meet Slick Eddie? He's no dummy, and for Beam to assume he is -- well, given he covered the man for 50 years, that's the surprise.
DEC 9 A "suspicious package" shut down part of Zachary Sunday, WAFB tells us in this post. The package, which eventually was "rendered safe" (bomb squad lingo for blown up) was found in a storage unit that someone quit paying on. Other cop gear was found in the unit, so it is possible the thing was a training tool, police say. But they leave out the best part: who bought it? Barry, Jarrod or Darrell?
Read the Flipping Paper!
Click Here for the Entire Print Version of IND Monthly