Thursday, 15 September 2011 12:09
by Walter Pierce
Chamber: Don’t repeal charter
The Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors has voted to oppose one of two major local propositions on the Oct. 22 ballot: repeal of the Lafayette Home Rule Charter and a return to separate city and parish forms of government. The Lafayette Charter Commission, which met for nine months to review the charter for Lafayette Consolidated Government and to hear opposing views on how to rectify problems in it pertaining to city of Lafayette sovereignty, recommended in April to put repeal of the charter to a parishwide vote.
The chamber’s position on repeal, broadly referred to as deconsolidation, runs counter to that of one of its ranking members, Vice President of Marketing & Governmental Relations Bruce Conque, a charter commissioner who has been offering presentations to local civic and government groups in support of repealing the charter. (Conque, however, has been making the pitch for deconsolidation as a private citizen and former commissioner and not on behalf of the chamber.) A fellow former charter commissioner, Don Bacque, has been making the same rounds in opposition to deconsolidation and has even formed a political action committee — True Pac — to raise money for a marketing campaign urging the parish to shoot down the proposition. The pair has also appeared together to press their respective cases.
The chamber, meanwhile, is calling for a reconstituted charter commission to be formed and to find ways to address the city’s issues without returning to the style of dual government that existed in Lafayette Parish before 1996.
“The chamber’s position is that there are certain deficiencies in the current charter that have the potential of weakening the city of Lafayette,” says chamber President/CEO, Rob Guidry in a press release staking out the organization’s position. “The business community feels that those problems can be solved without a formal separation of the two governments.”
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OCT 31 The National Journal posts another story from its visit to NOLA, this one about the struggling Vietnamese shrimpers in the area. The publication has been looking at how the state is recovering from Katrina, nine years later.
OCT 31 The New York Times posts this look at Louisiana politics, and how national issues are forcing out the old-time local politicking. Of course they mention EWE, aptly described as an old-time politician known for "charming one half of the state and mortifying the other."
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OCT 31 Us old folks are used to a two-party system, although most of us aren't sold on its success. But what if that system wasn't in place; what if politics reflected the true level of diversity among voters? That's what an LSU student is dreaming of in this editorial. He sees the two parties' control of our politics as limiting.
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OCT 30 Blogger Tom Aswell is still all over the OGB mess - and all by himself, apparently. In this post, he's revealing orders from the Jindal administration to destroy records from the state employee health insurance plan. Those orders (he's heard) have angered the Secretary of State and caused an administration lawyer to quit her job. Wow!
OCT 30 A NOLA lady has alleged she was drugged and raped at a Bywater club that had a clothing-optional policy until recently, and she's now become the victim of a smear campaign, columnist Jarvis DeBerry writes in this post. She chose to reveal her story and her name, and she's being punished for that now, he says.
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