Another feather in Lafayette’s “Cool Town” cap was bestowed last week when Festival International de Louisiane was named Best World Music Festival in the 2012 About.com Readers’ Choice Awards. The Hub City’s signature spring event out-pointed even the prestigious Smithsonian Folklife Festival for the distinction. “Well, clearly we’re excited about it,” says Dana Baker, executive director of Festival International. “And it’s a humbling award considering who we were up against, too.” The annual cultural fête gets under way in just three weeks. Complementing this year’s FIL will be a brand new venue — in multiple venues — for Lafayette to refine its cool quotient: INNOV8Lafayette, a project of the Innovation Division of the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce that will comprise a festival of ideas celebrating our creative culture.
Point. Counterpoint. Just as Lafayette is ascending into regional and national consciousness as a cool place to live, work, play and even retire — there were no fewer than eight articles over the weekend in major U.S. newspapers extolling the cultural virtues of our fair city and region — the agents of regression we wrote about in the introduction to last week’s “Cool Town” issue turned their ghastly visage upon us, led by City-Parish Council Chairman Jared Bellard. In an exchange at last week’s council meeting about a projected $5 million shortfall in LCG’s operating budget to man two proposed fire stations, Bellard trotted out his usual bogeymen: the horse farm and non-governmental organizations. “Here’s my rectification: 100 percent hiring freeze, get the horse farm money back [and] put it to fire — build your fire station — stop the GPS program, stop a lot of programs; stop the nonprofits, everything that’s a luxury,” Bellard said. The exchange with CAO Dee Stanley came, ironically (?), on the heels of Bellard complaining ad nauseam about the stalled progress in paving a parking lot at a ballpark in his district. In other words, a luxury.
State Sen. A.G. Crowe, R-Slidell, is cawing for Louisiana Family Forum during this year’s legislative session. The GOP solon from almost Mississippi sponsored an odious bill that cleared a Senate committee last week and may, by publication of this week’s Ind, have been debated on the Senate floor. Crowe’s Senate Bill 217 would effectively prevent public bodies — local governments, school boards, public commissions — from requiring private vendors with whom they contract for services to have strictly delineated anti-discrimination policies. Of course, what this is really about is the LFF’s anti-gay agenda; discrimination against gays and lesbians — and the physically uncoordinated and mentally challenged — would be countenanced under Crowe’s bill. If passed, SB 217 could have wide-ranging ramifications, not the least of which is prohibiting local school boards from requiring charter schools to accept gay students, children with poor English skills, a lack of athletic talent or special needs, which the state Department of Education currently requires of charter operators.
Casual cool for Thanksgiving
Shop Lafayette goes strong
The fight to clean up Lafayette Parish could get some added ammunition with two ordinances up for votes Tuesday by the City-Parish Council targeting litter-bugs.
A divided 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal reversed a Lafayette district judge’s ruling absolving the co-owner of a New Iberia accounting firm of liability in an embezzlement case.
Our View: It’s reasonable, temporary and invests in Lafayette’s future.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
By striking a deal to lessen the blow of health insurance changes on state workers, school employees and retirees, Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration lowered the volume of criticism but gave itself and local school boards a new budget headache.
With the airport tax coming up for a parishwide vote in about a week, the Broussard City Council and its mayor have come out in support of the proposal.
Protesters rallied peacefully in several Louisiana cities in the wake of the Missouri grand jury decision not to indict a police officer in the fatal shooting of Michal Brown.
Three bedroom in Port Barre or two bedroom in Opelousas
US cities bidding on Olympics; Guard prevents more Ferguson riots; storm threatens travel and more national and international news for Wednesday, November 26, 2014.
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
The U.S. rep billed LSU for work allegedly performed on the same days Congress voted on major legislation and held important committee hearings on energy and the ACA.
“I am only getting a little nervous about two projects — the proposed Sasol GTL facility [not the new ethylene plant] and the proposed G2X facility — both in Lake Charles. They need a hefty difference between oil and natural gas prices to make sense.”
Abysmally low participation by the public has prompted the council to scuttle the 2014 survey with plans to simplify it and try again next year.
The village now says the ordinance will likely be overturned and authorities will more vigorously enforce existing leash laws.
Lower oil prices also might slow the growth of oil production in parts of the U.S., Canada and elsewhere because it will no longer be so profitable.
Bill Cassidy cast an early ballot Tuesday, seeking to draw renewed attention to a race that has fallen off newspaper front pages and away from people's minds as they plan holiday meals and shopping schedules.
A Lafayette woman faces up to 20 years in prison for running up more than $1 million in unauthorized charges to her company credit card.
Signs that our state’s banking industry is undergoing a downsizing in 2014 were further confirmed today with the FDIC’s latest figures showing a third straight quarter in which Louisiana lost more banks and earned less money.
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State police say a 47-year-old Lafayette man, who collected more than $83,000 in disability benefits, is accused of operating two businesses out of his home at a time when he claimed he had no income.
Battered all night by Baltimore's relentless pass rush, Drew Brees could feel his protection collapsing and Terrell Suggs getting ahold of him as he urgently unloaded a pass to the right flat toward tight end Jimmy Graham.
After a convincing defeat at the polls on Nov. 4, Earl “Nickey” Picard has decided to let bygones be bygones with his former right-hand man Brian Pope, announcing his support for his former employee’s runoff bid to become Lafayette’s next city marshal.
Saturday the athletic department did everything possible to ensure the 2014 Ragin’ Cajun seniors remembered fondly their last home game. Rain and lightning never arrived but turbulence did in the form of the Appalachian State Mountaineers.
Even stranger than the Republican Party’s decision to hold a “unity rally” earlier this month for Congressman Bill Cassidy in a Baton Rouge bar, Huey’s Bar, was the fact that the establishment was named after Louisiana’s most famous Democrat.
Bar Code is not a gay bar.
After failing to pass a medical marijuana bill last year, state Sen. Fred Mills, R-Parks, is telling supporters he will return in 2015 with legislation that focuses on different applications like oils and pills.
Voters, obviously, are not yet tuned into the 2015 ballot, despite the intriguing races it will host.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.