Written by The Independent Staff
Wednesday, 24 March 2010
We admire Cajundome Director Greg Davis’ civic engagement and applaud his activism in the public education arena. So it was a positive development last week when Davis voluntarily resigned as chairman of the Lafayette Parish Public Education Stakeholders Council. The announcement came about a week after the Lafayette Parish School System withdrew as a member of the council amid concerns that LaPESC would try to influence school board elections this fall. Davis has been an outspoken critic of the school system. In announcing his resignation privately to the LaPESC board and in speaking about it later with us, Davis acknowledged this adversarial relationship as the motive for stepping down. “I just felt personally that with myself as chair of LaPESC that that would be an impediment to the Lafayette Parish School System coming back and rejoining LaPESC, and so I made a personal decision to step aside for that reason,” he told us. Davis will remain an active member of LaPESC, but his withdrawal as chairman is likely to restore a level of amity to the dialogue about our public schools. We hope the LPSS reciprocates and reconsiders its membership.
There is much that is bad in Dr. Ali Ghalambor’s impending retirement as not only a petroleum engineering professor at UL Lafayette but his resignation as department head, as well as his agreement to reimburse the university more than $84,000. An internal university audit, first reported by The Advocate, suggests Ghalambor accepted travel reimbursements from the university while also accepting them from the institutions he visited over a four-year period. The audit also finds the professor was paid more than $42,000 for “conducting activities that appear to be outside of his working hours or responsibilities.” Ghalambor, however, has apparently not been asked to pay back the 42 grand. That UL officials suspected financial guile on the professor’s part as long ago as 2004 suggests the double dipping — if proved true — goes back even further, possibly a decade. But as it now stands, Ghalambor is being allowed to cut his losses, pay back a portion of the allegedly ill-gotten gains, and walk away. District Attorney Mike Harson is said to have the case but has so far declined to speak to the media about it, which suggests Ghalambor will elbow his way into retirement without so much as a slap on the wrist.
God willing, State Rep. Rickey Hardy will remain active and lucid late into life. More people are doing it these days, and Hardy is a sharp fellow. So why the dull legislation to bar persons 70 years old and older from running for office or holding elected positions? The Lafayette Democrat’s bill prescribes an amendment to the Louisiana constitution proposing just that. “You’re taking up a seat. You’re no longer energized,” Hardy told The Daily Advertiser. Hold on there, whipper snapper; there are plenty of elderly lawmakers who are energetic and mentally supple. We just can’t think of any. Hardy has prefiled more bills than any other lawmaker, as best we can tell, and many of them are good ideas that deserve consideration. This isn’t one of them. But no harm no foul: In a culture like the South that honors its elders, Hardy’s geriatric gerrymandering won’t make it out of committee.
So far the Democratic agenda includes proposals to expand Medicaid; increase the minimum wage; offer equal pay to women; heighten regulations on predatory lending practices, like payday loans; and add more transparency in the governor’s office.
Hot-button education issues ranging from Common Core to charter schools have some lawmakers pushing to scrap the appointing process and go back to electing the state's super.
Downtown Lafayette restaurant launches new concept near Le Triomphe
Police say the handcuffed man fatally shot himself in the back, but his family isn't buying the story.
Yeah, it's smoked venison sausage stuffed in a suckling pig stuffed in a lamb and roasted over an open fire.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Gov. Bobby Jindal offered a budget proposal that suggests new education and health care spending, pay raises for state workers and an incentive fund to encourage colleges to enhance their science, engineering and technology training.
Reamco founders Brent Milam and Ashley Lane now shareholders in acquiring company and part of its management team.
Low heels, high style
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday, March 11, 2014:
The board hopes to recover all fees paid, plus one-half, along with what could amount to hundreds of thousands in additional penalties.
Oh, the irony... or something like that.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Hopefully he’ll be better prepared today than he was in that Feb. 20 deposition.
They came by the hundreds, arriving from all regions of the state to gather on the steps of our Capitol in protest of the Legislature’s long tradition of giving industry the go-ahead to abuse our air, our water and our coastline, all in the name of good economics.
Gov. Bobby Jindal’s recent rhetoric against President Barack Obama has failed to boost his standing among the conservative base.
Louisiana's annual legislative session begins.
The state has hired marksmen to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at two wildlife management areas in south Louisiana.
St. Patty's Day crafts
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.