In early 2006, Our Lady of Lourdes President and CEO Bud Barrow confirmed his interest in the Boustany family property on Ambassador Caffery Parkway near Verot School Road (""Healthy Moves," April 26). Now real estate sources say the local not-for-profit hospital has 45 acres under contract for about $14 million. Owned by two Boustany family members, the 45-acre tract extends from Frem Boustany Drive down Ambassador Caffery Parkway toward Verot School Road. The property is across from Home Bank.
Barrow could not be reached for comment last week, but Lourdes spokesman Berch Stelly released the following statement: "We can confirm that we are engaged in negotiations for the acquisition of property for Our Lady of Lourdes and are presently undergoing an approval process in order to secure that property. However, we must allow this approval process to take its course, before we can publicly comment on specifics such as the location and cost of the property. We are extremely hopeful that we can make such an announcement in the very near future."
In The Independent Weekly's April story, Barrow anticipated making the announcement before the end of 2006. "If there's one thing Lourdes has been guilty of is to spend a lot of time talking. I think by the fall we'll be prepared to make significant announcements, statements of commitment," he said.
At that time, Barrow confirmed that Lourdes would likely be relocating some services from its existing site at the corner of St. Landry and St. Mary streets, but the administrator stopped short of saying Lourdes would abandon the 57-year-old facility altogether. "I'm not sure we'll ever disembark completely from here," Barrow said. "Right now Lafayette has a 20th century model of health care, [and] 20th century models are doomed to fail. We're looking to build a 21st century model â?¦ [which means] all roads should not lead to one campus."
The administrator continued, "Specialty and focused-service facilities can be built in areas close to the consumer, often with quick access and convenience not often associated with large institutions." Because of their small size, these facilities can more easily adapt to technological and market changes, he said.
Should Lourdes relocate most of its services to Ambassador Caffery Parkway, it will be well-positioned to take advantage of that corridor's growth and expanding population. Plans call for Ambassador Caffery Parkway to be extended south to U.S. Highway 90, opening up a large portion of previously undeveloped real estate. Lourdes would likely attract business from all of south Lafayette Parish as well as Iberia and St. Martin parishes.
Barrow has been quick to dispel speculation that Lourdes would be downsizing. "I don't think we're talking about building a smaller organization. I cannot envision any major services, or minor ones, that we intend to eliminate," he said. ' Leslie Turk
PIERRE STAYING PUT
Addressing persistent rumors that he is planning to step down from the state Legislature for a lobbying position with Marathon Oil, Lafayette Rep. Wilfred Pierre says he is finishing out his term, which expires at the end of 2007. Pierre confirms he was in talks with Marathon about a lobbying job but says state ethics law prevents any state representative or senator from lobbying the Legislature for two years after leaving office. However, there are no restrictions on former legislators lobbying the administration.
"That's been resolved," Pierre says. "[Marathon] decided to go another course because it would be difficult to hire me being that I could not lobby the Legislature for two years."
Pierre, who is prevented by term limits from seeking re-election next year, says he is weighing multiple options for his post-legislative career.
"It's kind of premature to say right now. I have many good options, and I don't know what direction I'll go in right now. I have a year, and a lot could happen. But I intend to serve the remainder of my term." ' Nathan Stubbs
WHO WANTS TO BE A COUNCILMAN?
Wanted: thick-skinned loquacious persons able to work late on Tuesday nights. People skills, kissing babies, a plus. Must be at least 18 years of age and a resident of Lafayette Parish for at least one year. No education/degree required. Annual pay of $22,791 plus some expenses.
The Louisiana Supreme Court has punted on its first chance to decide whether a new state constitutional provision declaring gun possession a fundamental right could void a long list of criminal statutes that regulate firearms.
New Orleans' offense, which ranks sixth in the NFL, isn't helping many of its skill players pile up Pro Bowl-type stats. Rather, the approach of coach Sean Payton and quarterback Drew Brees has enabled a wide range of play-makers to emerge periodically with high-production outings.
Amid mounting pressure from deep-pocketed business interests, an ordinance that would have phased out a 2 percent rebate merchants in the city and unincorporated Lafayette Parish receive for collecting sales taxes has been pulled.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Thursday, December 12, 2013:
As part of a national undertaking known by industry insiders as the “Butterfly Project,” a rebranded version of The Daily Advertiser is set to launch with Sunday’s edition of the Gannett-owned paper.
Louisiana moved up a slot to 48th in the ranking of healthy states — once again, thank God for Mississippi! — so all this frettin’ about Gov. Bobby Jindal’s refusal to expand Medicaid per Obamacare ... fuggidaboutit! We don’t need Medicaid no more!
The Denham Springs woman who placed Christmas lights in the shape of a butter finger on her roof in a display of anger directed at neighbors has doubled the trouble for the 2013 holiday season.
The 30-second commercial, to run around the state, is the Democratic senator's first TV spot in her bid for re-election to a fourth term.
It's a number that has edged up but falls far short of the thousands who are eligible for subsidized coverage.
A group of mostly higher education leaders will make recommendations to state lawmakers about how to tweak the policies governing tuition rates charged at the state's public colleges.
That would be Congressman John Fleming talking about Sen. David Vitter.
The alleged mastermind behind the bribery scheme that went on for four years under DA Mike Harson’s nose isn’t just schizophrenic, bipolar and recovering from mini strokes; he now says he has cancer.
Louisiana's higher education leaders are trying to work out a financing deal to keep the state's public colleges from running low on state cash to operate their campuses.
With their latest triumph, the Saints left little doubt about how tough they are to beat in the Superdome. Unfortunately, two of their remaining three games are on the road.
For the first time in at least five years, retired teachers, state workers and school system employees could see an increase in their pension checks.
Lawmakers and Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration shared a collective sigh of relief with the news that Louisiana's tax amnesty program brought in the $200 million that they used to help balance this year's budget.
Drew Brees often makes the extraordinary look routine, particularly during night games in the Superdome.
The teams were extended invitations Sunday for the New Year's Day matchup played at Raymond James Stadium, home of the NFL's Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
If all 44 projects are approved, about $300 million would remain in the fund set up as a down payment to help the Gulf.
Last week, the Saints gave up 429 yards to Seattle, second most in a game this season.
Since Anthony Jennings and Brooks Haack were not expected to contribute until next year at the earliest, it seemed like a sneak peek at hidden Christmas gifts.
Louisiana National Guard personnel seeking benefits for same-sex spouses will have an easier time filing the requests, despite a state refusal to let its workers process the paperwork.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera sees one potential flaw with his team's stellar defensive play so far this season. "Apparently we like to bite on the double moves," Rivera said.
Computer hackers may have gained access to the personal information of thousands of Louisiana residents who use debit cards issued by JPMorgan Chase for three state agencies, authorities said Wednesday.
Jim Purcell, who has been in the job since February 2011, notified the Board of Regents about his decision at its monthly meeting.