[Editor's Note: After this story went to press, The INDsider was able to confirm, through a source close to LeBlanc, that LeBlanc is registered as an independent. The story now reflects this new information.]
Former state Rep. Jerry Luke LeBlanc is ready to get back into politics. Sources tell the INDsider LeBlanc, an independent, plans to run for term-limited state Sen. Mike Michot’s District 23 seat this fall, setting up what could be a tough race against state Rep. Page Cortez.
LeBlanc currently serves as vice president for administration and finance at UL Lafayette. He resigned from the Legislature in 2004 to serve as former Gov. Kathleen Blanco’s commissioner of administration. LeBlanc was a five-term state rep from Lafayette and is the son of a former state representative. He also worked as a real estate appraiser during his time in the Legislature.
Michot’s seat is also being sought by Cortez, a Lafayette Republican in his first term representing House District 43. Although Cortez has not formally announced for the seat, he has already held fundraisers in anticipation of a run and his intention to seek the seat is well established in Lafayette political circles. Reached via text message Thursday morning and asked if LeBlanc’s pending candidacy would have any effect on his plans, Cortez replied, “Not at all.”
It’s unclear if LeBlanc, widely regarded as a seasoned and savvy campaigner, would have to resign his post at UL if his bid for Michot’s seat is successful. He makes $215,000 a year at the university.
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DEC 4 This post on Philebrity, an arty Philadelphia blog, previews the lecture Bobby Jindal gave last night in the City of Brotherly Love. Sadly, not a lot of love headed Bobby's way in this post, which indicates a level of disdain for our Guv generally limited to residents of our lovely state.
DEC 4 The NOLA Defender blog goes old-school next year, this post tells us. The blog, which features news and extensive arts coverage, will publish free print versions quarterly, the story says. In a business that seems to be heading away from the printed version, it is nice to see that going the other way for a change.
DEC 4 There's another story on state employee abuse of public credit cards in the news, and blogger CB Forgotston has the solution: get rid of them. We don't need them; it's more work without them to accomplish what you need to accomplish, but what's wrong with that, CB wants to know. The legislature needs to pass a law forbidding the things, he says.
DEC 4 Here's one of two recent posts on the Lens about spending at two charter school operations in New Orleans. This one is about training for less than 200 KIPP employees in Vegas -- which cost nearly $120,000. That's $120,000, with six figures. The other operation was the Friends of King schools, which sent the staff, including eight of nine board members, to a retreat at the beach. That cost $70,000. So far, the Lens is the only media covering this. One wonders if that would be the case if this level of spending had happened in a public school operation.
DEC 4 In the effort to lay blame for our disappearing coast, a board charged with protecting our coast voted to sue the US Army Corps of Engineers Tuesday, this story on NOLA.com says. One suit will seek to force the corps to pay for damage caused by the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet project, and the other will seek to force the corps to pay for a levee system in Algiers on the West Bank. Interesting.
DEC 4 Thanks to blogger Robert Mann's Facebook page, we know about this story in the Washington Blade, which says that the Louisiana National Guard has decided to process same-sex partner benefits. The story was posted Tuesday, following an interview with a guard chief by the Blade. That same day, the Advertiser ran this story, which said Louisiana is still a hold-out on same sex benefits. So which story is correct?
DEC 4 One Alabama fan shot another dead, this WWL story tells us, because she didn't feel the other fan was upset enough about Alabama's loss to Auburn. The women were at a party, and the dead lady, mom to three children, was joking with other party-goers about the loss, which didn't sit well with the shooter, the story says. Police think alcohol might have been a factor. Ya think?
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