Ultimately it will be the voters of Lafayette Parish — city, unincorporated, smaller municipalities — who will decide whether to chuck the city-parish charter and return to dual city and parish forms of government. But penultimately the Lafayette City-Parish Council must make it possible, and the vote to advance an ordinance to the ballot box will require a 6-3 super-majority. That’s not likely. Here’s how we think it will shake out:
FOR: Brandon Shelvin (District 3), Kenneth Boudreaux (District 4), Don Bertrand (District 7), Keith Patin (District 8)
The city-majority council members have much to gain if the charter is repealed. Each is in his first term in office and, assuming the charter is repealed and a new city council with a three-term limit is (re)created, presumably each could try for what would amount to four consecutive terms in office.
Boudreaux and Patin, who both voted for the deconsolidation recommendation as members of the charter committee, are on board with scrapping the city-parish charter. Bertrand says he’s on the fence and feels like we’re moving too quickly, but adds, “It would be hard for me not to give the people of the city of Lafayette and the parish the opportunity to vote on something.”
Like Boudreaux, Shelvin represents an economically challenged part of the city that stands to benefit if the parish is jettisoned and the city focuses its resources on itself.
AGAINST: Purvis Morrison (District 1), Jared Bellard (District 5), William Theriot (District 9)
Morrison is on record dead set against repealing the charter. “When I ran [for office] I can specifically remember people asking us not to be this north side-south side, east side-west side council,” he says. “They wanted us to be a total council for this parish, and now we’re coming out in our third year [in office] and we’re talking about deconsolidating. This parish is not that big, and to pit the parish against the city is not the right direction.”
Theriot says he’s keeping an open mind, but neither he nor Bellard have any apparent motivation in voting for deconsolidation; they would effectively be voting themselves out of Lafayette government since neither lives in the city limits.
X FACTORS: Jay Castille, (District 2), Sam Dore (District 6)
Castille’s district is 48 percent city, 52 percent rural and Carencro, so he’s the most likely to be divided. He tells The Independent he prefers to amend the charter to make it a more workable document, yet he joined the committee on Feb. 1 in voting unanimously to put a deconsolidation ordinance before the council. But he also says we’re going at this too fast: “I still believe the people have the right to vote on their type of government, but I also believe they have the right to have the information they need to make an educated vote.”
Dore, the LPUA chairman, represents the district that is most overwhelmingly city residents. But he, too, is wary of giving up on consolidation, and he says he’s hearing the same from his constituents. “I don’t believe that consolidation is working the way it should or that it could,” he says, “and I think we could make some hard choices and improve on the way it works. But scrapping it? Man, I don’t know.”
Dore and Castille both sound more likely to vote against a deconsolidation ordinance. So where does that leave us? Four in favor, five against. Two votes short of even making it onto a ballot.
Thousands of people who bought health insurance through the marketplace created by the federal health care overhaul face price hikes next year that could top 10 percent.
Three bedroom traditional Lafayette home or three bedroom Breaux Bridge home
Style market slated for old Artesia
The city prosecutor has released the case file for Lafayette Parish School Board member Tehmi Chassion’s simple battery complaint against Superintendent Pat Cooper, and the seven witness statements given to police illustrate two very different scenarios.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana fell one spot in an annual national ranking of child well-being that looks at poverty, education and health access.
A federal judge has decided he doesn't need to hear more arguments in the case of a gay couple who want a Louisiana marriage license.
Saints again bring playoff aspirations into 2014 campaign.
New details in the case against the man arrested for last week’s bomb threat and bank robbery has surfaced, including a MidSouth Bank surveillance video showing the alleged suspect attempt an early-morning bank robbery.
Citing conflicting witness accounts, the city prosecutor will not pursue Tehmi Chassion’s allegation of simple battery against Superintendent Pat Cooper.
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
Smoked meat, fresh sides and the best boudin around
Michael Sam focuses on making the team; Christians flee Mosul; Kerry at work in Middle East and more national and international news for Wednesdays, July 23, 2014.
Mellow Mushroom Pizza Bakers opens on Johnston.
Cirque du Soleil effortlessly combines circus art with beloved Michael Jackson hits.
Kelly Guidry Open House
Parents and teachers who support the Common Core education standards sued Gov. Bobby Jindal Tuesday over his actions against the multi-state standards, accusing him of illegally meddling in education policy.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
An arrest was announced this morning in connection with last week’s bomb scare at UL Lafayette.
Attorneys, judges and others interviewed by LaPolitics expect 15 to 20 district judge races this year.
"I feel like I'm under siege," an attorney said recently over drinks at Galatoire's Bistro in Baton Rouge. "We all do. Every time I turn around somebody wants a check. District attorney races. The judges. They're killing us."
As a requirement for running for Congress in the 6th District, former Gov. Edwin Edwards has filed his financial disclosure statement with the U.S. House showing his income in 2013 totaling $242,787.
Unlike those swindled by Bernie Madoff, the victims of Texas businessman Robert Allen Stanford’s Ponzi scheme won’t be getting any relief from the Securities Investor Protection Corp.’s emergency fund after a recent appellate court ruling.
Acadiana's Top 50 Private Companies
It would be an understatement to say Schumacher Group had a challenging year in 2013.
Hampton Toyota has been serving Acadiana as the premier Toyota dealership for more than 10 years. And now, the glossy Johnston Street dealership is looking forward to a makeover.
Even when Floyd Degueyter is on “vacation” he’s hard at work.
As the second largest metal heat treating company in the country, Analytic Stress Relieving Inc. has grown by leaps and bounds since its inception in 1979.
When the Prohibition era came to an end in 1933, Joseph R. Streva saw an opportunity to make a little extra money to supplement his day job.
When a hurricane hits, Brent Mouton doesn’t run. The convenience store chain owner is proof that the challenges of mother nature can almost break a business, but Mouton learned to grow out of temporary closure from near devastation in 2002 and of lost potential revenue.