Evangeline Parish School Board discusses cross curricula and Parent Empowerment and Community Engagement Day
As reported by Mallory Moser
Evangeline Parish School Board Meeting September 18, 2019
The Evangeline Parish School Board Wednesday heard from Lisa Jack on how the new curriculum allows for cross-curricula in ELA (English-Language Arts) and Social Studies. This presentation came at the request of Board President, Wayne Dardeau. Ms. Jack explained that with this curriculum, textbooks have been replaced with text sources such as articles, graphs, videos, maps, etc. This curriculum requires a lot of preparation by the teachers, but Ms. Jack says that she loves it- it's applicable to real life for the students and she and the other teachers are able to come together to plan as a team to lessen the amount of work on the individual. Ms. Jack's thoughts on the matter were echoed by Curriculum and Operational Facilitator in Science and Social Studies, Anita West, and Basile High School science teacher, Kenneth Kidder during their requested presentation on why textbooks do not drive the curriculum Ms. West led the presentation by informing the Board on the changes the State of Louisiana has made to the curriculum standards for Science and stated that there is no textbook out there to meet these new standards. Much like what Ms. Jack stated in her presentation, Mr. Kidder and Ms. West spoke about how first and secondary sources, articles, and videos are being used in lessons and any textbook that is in the classroom is used as a supplement. Simply stated, the textbooks are not being used. Mr. Dardeau expressed some concern about how much work this seems to be for the teachers and how the concern is about teacher burnout. Ms. West and Mr. Kidder both stated that Ms. West's role as Facilitator has greatly helped to take the burden off of the teachers. Superintendent Darwan Lazard further stated that with curriculums that are not constantly changing, the focus is on preparing the students to perform at a high level and that they remain committed to supporting the teachers to ensure that they have the help and resources they need to keep everyone performing at their best.
Special Education Director, Kelli Lafleur gave a presentation on the creation of a Special Education Advisory Panel. The Evangeline Parish Special Education Advisory Panel (Evangeline SEAP) will consist of eight (8) panel members, four parents of exceptional children, two Evangeline Parish district employees, and two community stakeholders appointed for a one-year term. The panel will meet three times a year. Applications will be accepted until Friday, October 25, 2019. Accepted applicants will be notified of their selection.
In the closing statements of the meeting, Superintendent Lazard spoke about the upcoming EPSB Title I Parent Empowerment and Community Engagement Day which will be held at the Ville Platte North Side Civic Center on September 27th, 2019 at 9:00 a.m. There will be games, educational programs, and over $13,000 in cash prizes to give away. He also congratulated Ville Platte High School on their victory against Sacred Heart High School in the Tee Cotton Bowl.
The next Evangeline Parish School Boar
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from Lorenzo Richard who represents the Krewe de Evangeline Coalition. The non profit community mission statement is to prevent the onset and reduce the progression of underage drinking.
Richard said "Alcohol is a drug and is the #1 drug used by young people. More young people drink alcohol than smoke cigarettes or use illegal drugs."
He shared statistics from the 2016 Caring Communities Youth Survey using surveys from our parish school students. In every category, Evangeline Parish students in grades 6, 8, 10 and 12 nearly doubled the state and national average of alcohol usage.
Richard also gave information about teen drinking. He said "Teens tend to mix alcohol with energy drinks which is even more dangerous than drinking the alcohol by itself.
The coalition is planning to have a "Youth Blast" event Friday Sept. 13 from 8-12 noon at the Mamou Recreation Center for all 7th graders in Evangeline Parish Schools. Some 467 students will be bused in from all schools for this special program featuring guest speakers and music.
Club President Nicole Wenger announced that plans are being made to begin a second Rotary Youth group in Ville Platte: this one at Ville Platte High. The RYLLA student group has been in existence for several years and has been heavily involved in community events.
The Evangeline Parish Police Jury Monday approved the purchase of a 1.7 acre tract of land for an animal shelter that will be operated by Every Paw Animal Rescue (E.P.A.R.). Currently the parish has no parish shelter. The proposed shelter will be located near the old Pizza Hut and Dirt Cheap on East Main Street. Secretary Treasurer Donald Bergeron reported that there will be five kennels constructed on the new site.
Also, the police jury approved cooperative endeavor agreements with Chataignier and Ville Platte. The jury plans to provide labor and equipment to help "blade out" ruts on Rosa Lane in the Village of Chataignier. Also, the jury voted to provide labor and equipment to help open up a drainage ditch on Progressive road in Ville Platte.
In other action, the police jury:
Appointed Dr. Dale Reed as the new Right of Way and Compliance Agent for the parish at a pay rate of $18 an hour for up to 20 hours a week;
Approved a request from Public Works Director Chester Granger to purchase a railcar to replace a bridge on Pin Oak Lane;
Received news from Secretary Treasurer Donald Bergeron that sales tax collections for July collected in August was $276,442 or some $3700 less than for the same period a year ago;
Approved the reappointment of three members to the Evangeline Parish 9-1-1 Communications Board for another two year term: Tony Rozas, Pat Derousselle and Ronnie Broussard;
Approved the tax rolls as compiled by Assessor Dirk Deville despite appeals by two oil companies over valuation prices. The appeals will be heard by the Louisiana Tax Commission;
And voted to adjust the millage rates and roll forward to rates not to exceed the maximum authorized rate approved by voters.
Support Personnel in the Evangeline Parish Public School District will be honored on Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 5:00pm at the Ville Platte High School auditorium, according to Supervisor Sherral Tezeno.
Mike Anderson, custodian at Ville Platte High School was chosen by the judges to be the District Support Person of the Year. Here are the rest of this year's nominees: Suzanne Andrus, Paraeducator at Basile High School; Paula Bergeaux, Paraeducator at W.W. Stewart Elementary; Le Ann Guillory, Paraeducator at Pine Prairie High School; Mary Soileau, Paraeducator at Bayou Chicot Elementary; Cindy Deculus, Paraeducator at Mamou High; Vashanski Thomas, Warehouse Manager at the Media Center; Ms. Jerry Bradley, Bus Driver at First Student at Bayou Chicot Elementary; Kimberly Soileau, Secretary at Mamou Elementary; Benita Wilson, Paraeducator at Vidrine Elementary; Lisa Miller, Administrative Professional at Media Center; Judy Guillory, Administrative Professional at the Central Office; Cinema Edwards, Secretary at James Stephens Montessori; Tanya Celestine, Paraeducator at Chataignier Elementary; Emerald Janice, Paraeducator at Ville Platte Elementary; Mark McCauley , Technology in the Central Office; and Joshua Ricks , Paraeducator at Evangeline Central School.
Following the recognition program at Ville Platte High, all of the nominees will be taken to the Crawfish Barn via limousine service to enjoy dinner with the staff members of the school board, family and friends.
Six riders qualified Sunday to compete in this year's running of the Tournoi next month. Facing temperatures near the 100 degree mark, the riders and their horses qualified at the Ward One Industrial Park to participate in the Tournoi scheduled for Sunday Oct. 13.
The riders who qualified are: Shane Trahan (who is the father of another rider Austin), Cody Guillory (son of the late Tournoi rider Cody Guillory), Keith Saucier, Shane Lee, Todd Manuel and Nick Fontenot. The six will join with the top ten riders from last year's event. The top ten riders were: Champion Eric Guillory, Alex Haller, Bryant Fontenot,, Ryan Haller, John Ross Guillory, Marcus Guillory, Kent Saucier, Chuck Manuel, Austin Trahan and Paul Fontenot.
Also attending the qualifying Sunday were the Tournoi Queens: 2019 Miss Louisiana Tournoi Queen Courtlyn Paige Bieber, a senior at Louisiana College, whose parents are Courtney and Rachel Bieber; 2019 Miss Teen Tournoi Queen-Charley Marie Bieber, a junior at Mamou High School whose parents are Charles and Michelle Bieber; and 2019 Little Tournoi Queen: Arris Fontenot, a student at Sacred Heart Elementary whose parents are Dirk and Rose Fontenot.
KVPI FM 92.5 will be there covering the Tournoi live on October 13 as we have every years since we first signed on in 1953. Special thanks to Tournoi Association member Steve Buffy Guillory for the information.
The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from two of its newest members during their meeting at the Family Life Center: Brian Ardoin and Garland Forman.
Brian Ardoin is a native of Pine Prairie. He served in the Louisiana State Police for 11 and a half years. He later taught criminal justice courses at LSU-Eunice. He owns a driving school "Top Cop Driving Academy". He is married and has four sons. He is a deacon at the Ninth Baptist Church.
Garland Forman is a native of the Bayou Chicot area. He graduated from Louisiana College in Pineville. He worked for the Eunice News, Gazette and for the past 31 years worked in Bunkie for the Bunkie Record newspaper in various capacities including as general manager. He is currently publisher and general manager of the Ville Platte Gazette. He is past president of the Louisiana Press Association. Garland is married with four children and two grand children.
In other rotary club news, Club President Nicole Wenger reminded club members:
The annual Rotary Club social is set for Oct. 22 at Nob Hill lodge;
On Oct. 29, the Rotary District Governor will make his annual visit to the club.
Evangeline Chamber of Commerce Civic Awards Banquet
August 27, 2019
The Ville Platte Civic Center was packed with chamber members along with families and friends of the nominees Tuesday night to pay tribute to honored citizens of the parish.
Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Renee Brown was the emcee. New Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce President Peter Strawitz and Vice-President Dr. Gwen Fontenot both spoke about their plans and goals for the new year. The guest speaker was Supt. Of Schools Darwan Lazard who made a presentation on the progress being made in our Evangeline Parish Public School System , which is the largest employer in the parish.
Here is the list of winners from the event:
Man of the Year-James Craig Pitre of Mamou; Woman of the year- Connie Lamke of Ville Platte; Farmer of the Year- Farrell Joe Costanza of Grand Prairie who farms some 4,000 acres of land; Business Person of the Year- Tie- Gene Burge, Chief Executive Officer of Savoy Medical Center of Mamou and Jay Gielow of Café Evangeline in Ville Platte; Business Person of the Year under 40- Ross Lafleur of Kary'sRoux in Ville Platte ; Business of the Year- Tie- Savoy Cancer Center of Mamou and Butler Tree Service of Turkey Creek; and selected as the Economic Development Person or organization of the Year- The Evangeline Parish Foundation.
Congratulations to the winners and all of the nominees.
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from new LSU Eunice Chancellor Nancy Sorenson. The new chancellor is a native of Indiana and received her master’s degree from the University of Texas. She said “It is an honor to be a part of the LSU system”. She and LSU Eunice Director of University Advancement Carey Lawson reported to Rotary Club members that student enrollment for this semester has increased 2 percent over the same period a year ago. The school has some 3300 students enrolled . She thanked the local Rotary Club for their annual endowment scholarship. Five local students will be awarded $1000 scholarships this year as a result of the rotary funding. LSU Eunice is looking to obtain 12.1 million dollars in state funding for a new science building. The building will house the school’s chemistry and science labs. She also stated that the school is in need of more housing for its students .The housing complex, Bengal Village, is completely sold out with 214 students. She announced that some 300 students were turned away because there were no more housing units available. The school has 800-1,000 students taking on-line courses. The chancellor said the school is proud of its athletic programs with national championship titles. The women’s softball program won the national N.J.C.A.A. championship last year. This past year, the school introduced three new sports: men and women’s soccer and men’s basketball. The two guest speakers were guests of Rotarian Dr. Ted Ardoin.
Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Office Reports Man Killed After Vehicle Falls on Top of Him at a Local Salvage Yard
Sheriff Eddie Soileau, of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Office has released the following:
A Ville Platte man was killed after he was crushed by an old vehicle at a local salvage yard.
Deputies report the man, identified as Randy James Dupre, was working at a local salvage yard on the 1200 block of Chauncey Pitre Road Tuesday afternoon and performing mechanical work underneath a salvaged vehicle attempting to remove the vehicle's engine.
It is believed that the device used to support the engine collapsed, causing it to fall on top of Dupre. Dupre was immediately removed from beneath the engine as CPR was administered. However, later Dupre was pronounced dead at Mercy Regional Hospital in Ville Platte.
The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from two special guests from Sacred Heart Church and School at their weekly meeting. Fr. Tom Voorhies, pastor at Sacred Heart Church and St. Joseph Catholic churches announced that a food drive is now on for the Christian Care and Share Center. Parishioners may drop off their non perishable food items at the church. In School News, the Sacred Heart school student count has increased by 12 students over last year. There are 578 students enrolled at Sacred Heart schools this year. The school has two new teachers: Megan Donovan and Emily Ortego. Last year, the school was awarded over $1.2 million dollars in student scholarships. Kimberly Lejeune, Sacred Heart Development Director reported on the school’s Interact club sponsored by the Rotary Club. She reported that the club is busy with bingo games for seniors at the Heritage Manor Nursing Home. She would like to invite local Rotary club members to attend the Interact club member meetings and share information about their business and profession. She announced that the “Meet the Trojans” Pep Rally is planned for August 29. The Tee Cotton Bowl is scheduled for Sept. 6 and the school homecoming is set for Nov. 8. The annual Sacred Heart School Foundation benefit dance with music by “One Trick Pony” is scheduled for February 8 at the school gym. The two guest speakers were the invited guests of Rotarian Wayne Vidrine. Club President Nicole Wenger thanked club members for their hard work last week in a service project assisting with the flooring project at “The Refinery” Men’s Shelter in Opelousas.
Ville Platte City Council Meeting
August 13, 2019
The Ville Platte City Council Tuesday recognized and honored shooting victim, Diamonte J. Wilson during their meeting Tuesday night at City hall. The young boy was shot and injured in the leg while riding in his father's car in a shooting incident by a 17 year old subject. He has made a complete recovery. The boy and his family attended the city council meeting where he was given a cake for his birthday, a plaque, money and a basketball goal set. In fact the youth got to sit on Mayor Jennifer Vidrine's lap for part of the meeting Tuesday night. Mayor Jennifer said "It was a senseless shooting but he has made a miraculous recovery with not even a limp." The mayor urged anyone with information on any criminal activity "If you see something, report it to the police ."
The city council discussed the growing problem of criminal activity involving guns in the city. In a question from City Councilman Mike Perron about the Y Not Stop closing earlier on the weekends to stop crowds of people gathering there after hours, the police chief had good news to report. The business has been closing its doors at 1:45am until 4;00am on Fridays and Saturdays since a shooting incident took place. The chief said the closing has made a difference.
In another area of town, city councilman Lionel Anderson is concerned that the business that was known as L&V Store is refusing to working with city officials in closing its doors a little earlier to keep crowds and criminal activity from forming. Mayor Jennifer Vidrine said the city's attorney is preparing steps the city can take to enforce an earlier closing time.
City Councilman Bryant Riggs announced that utility rates have not increased dramatically as some people were fearing. He said his personal bill went up $10 while a bill for a family of four increased by some $16. He checked on a business and their bill increased by $52. Riggs said some of the predictions being made about huge utility increases were to "scare people". He said the rates are all based on your individual consumption.
In other business, the city:
Watched as Mayor Jennifer Vidrine presented a special plaque to Louisiana Middle School Teacher of the Year Lisa Celestine Jack. She announced that that she has been named as the new Ville Platte Elementary Assistant Principal;;
--presented special plaques to Father Tom Voorhies on behalf of Sister Rita Darrensbourg and Sister Lucille Stelly who have recently left St. Joseph Catholic Church;
--approved a request from Jay Giehlow on behalf of the Evangeline Parish Arts Council to close a portion of South railroad street so the group can sponsor a benefit dance with Steve riley and the Mamou Playboys on Saturday Nov. 2;
--heard from Evangeline Tourism Director Renee Brown announce that there will be a parishwide Arts and Treasures Trail Sept. 27 and 28 for individuals, church groups, and businesses to hold a garage sale to attract tourists and visitors to our parish;
--approved the appointment of five additional police officers as patrolmen bringing the total number of patrolmen to ten on the police force;
--introduced an ordinance to issue a citation to motorists who drive in flooded streets like LaSalle street during rain events causing the eaves of water to enter into people's homes and businesses;
--approved liquor permits to the Cheap and Best Store (old K&B Store) and the Louisiana Cotton Festival for a liquor permit;
--heard a report from Mayor Jennifer Vidrine that the city is attempting to hire ten additional workers for the street department. She reported at the meeting all ten applicants so far have failed the drug test.
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from Rotarian Dr. Philippe Vidrine talk about the Louisiana Iris plants. He reminded club members that now is the perfect time to plan the Iris. He said there are five species that are native to Louisiana and grow well in our special climate. He urged club members to stay away from the yellow Spanish flag Iris. The five Louisiana varieties all grow well in various colors. You can buy these beautiful plants by mail order and in area nurseries.
In other business, Rotary Club President Nicole Wenger informed club members that the local club has teamed up with the two Opelousas rotary clubs to obtain a grant from Rotary International. The $9,000 grant will be used to make improvements to the kitchen at the Refinery Men's Mission in Opelousas. Rotarians Bob Manuel, Jimmy LeBlanc, Susan Saunders, John Mayeaux and Nicole Wenger will be working at the mission later today (Tuesday).
Ville Platte Mayor Jennifer Vidrine reported to club members that the Solid Waste Commission is still working hard to pick up all the limbs and branches throughout the city and parish. She is asking residents to please be patient.
Evangeline Parish Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel reported to KVPI News that qualifying for the October 12 Primary Election has ended. Here is the complete list of local candidates that have qualified :
Senator District 28- Heather Cloud , Bernard LeBas, Robert Johnson
State Representative 38th District- Taranza Arvie, Phil :Cowboy" Lemoine and Rhonda Butler
Sheriff- Neal Lartigue, Charles Guillory, Dirk Deville, Brian Ardoin, Jamie M. Fontenot, Joseph "Joe' Brady and Michael Kevin Fontenot
Assessor-Josh Fontenot and Chris Guillory
Clerk of Court-Randy Deshotel was re elected with no opposition
Coroner- Dr. Thomas G. Fontenot was re elected with no opposition
Police Juror District 1- Keith Saucier, Rocky Rider, incumbent and Camille Lafleur Fontenot
Police Juror District 2-Sidney Fontenot was reelected with no opposition
Police Juror District 3-Ryan Ardoin, incumbent and Cliff Fruge
Police Juror District 4- Lamar Johnson, incumbent and Robert Johnson
Police Juror District 5-Derek Marcantel and Kevin Veillon, incumbent
Police Juror District 6- Eric Soileau, incumbent, Cora Chretien-Veal and Donald Vidrine
Police Juror District 7-Brian Vidrine, incumbent, David Ortego and Kevin "Cabon" Fontenot
Police Juror District 8- Ryan LeDay Williams was re elected with no opposition
Police Juror District 9-Daniel Arvie, incumbent and Shawn D. Gallow.
Evangeline Parish School Board Meeting
August 7, 2019
The Evangeline Parish School Board Wednesday heard from Assistant Superintendent Mike Lombas recognize the newest French teachers who will be instructors in the expanding French Immersion program. The new instructors are Alice Renard of Paris , France and Ali Sarr of Canada. The teachers will teach students in the Third grade. The program is already being taught in K-2 grades at Mamou Elementary and Ville Platte Elementary. Lombas thanked the many people who donated furniture and other household items to furnish their living quarters while here. The two new French instructors will be special guests on KVPI's La Tasse de Café Friday morning at 8:00am.
In a related matter, Lombas said the Evangeline Parish French Immersion program will be featured in am upcoming New York Times Story. Richard Fausse, a feature reporter for the Times, is preparing to do a story on the first few days of a new Immersion teacher in a rural school. He chose to "shadow" new teacher, Alice Renard who will be teaching class at Mamou Elementary. Fausse was the author of a feature with the New York Times on KVPI for its French language programming some five years ago.
Special Education Director Kelli Lafleur recognized two J.A.G. teachers who were honored at a National Conference in Orlando, Florida for their efforts in the classroom. The Jobs for American Graduates instructors are Jaselyn Griffith and Diana F. Johnson..
Technology Coordinator John Deranger updated school board members on internet security. He reported that four school districts in the state were attacked recently using ransomware software. As a precaution, Evangeline as well as all other school districts are limiting internet usage to protect its data.
Supervisor Grace Sibley recognized Lisa Jack who was honored by the State Department of Education as the state Middle School Teacher of the Year. Everyone in attendance gave her a standing ovation. Sibley said "Out of 69 school districts in the state "We're Number One".
It was announced that Supt. Of Schools Darwan Lazard was honored on July 27 by United Way of St. Landry and Evangeline with the "Man with Heart" award for his service to the community.
In other action the school board:
--announced that the first day of classes for students for the new school year is August 13;
--the annual Launch ceremony for school employees is planned for Friday at 9:00am at the Ville Platte High Gymnasium.
Second Day of Qualifying Ends in Evangeline Parish
August 7, 2019
More candidates qualified with Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel on Wednesday on the second day to officially run in the October Primary Election. Here is the list of candidates who qualified on day two:
Sheriff: Michael Kevin Fontenot
Coroner: Dr. Thomas G. Fontenot, incumbent
Police Juror in District Six- Donald R. Vidrine
Police Juror in District Nine- Shawn D. Gallow
We failed to list the two candidates who qualified on the first day of qualifying for Assessor:Josh Fontenot and Chris Guillory.
Qualifying ends Thursday from 8:00am to 4;30pm .
Qualifying Begins in Evangeline Parish
August 6, 2019
Evangeline Parish Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel reported to KVPI News the list of political candidates who qualified today in his office on the first day of qualifying for the October 12th election.
District 28 Senator: Heather Cloud and Bernard LeBas
38th District State Representative: Taranza Arvie, Phil "Cowboy" Lemoine and Rhonda Butler
Sheriff: Neal Lartigue, Charles R. Guillory, Dirk Deville, Brian Ardoin, Jamie M. Fontenot and Joseph "Joe"Brady;
Clerk of Court: Randy Deshotel, incumbent;
Coroner: Nobody Qualified
Police Jury District One: Sidney Fontenot, incumbent;
Police Juror District Two: Sidney Fontenot, incumbent;
Police Juror District Three: Ryan Ardoin incumbent and Cliff Fruge;
Police Juror District Four: Lamar Johnson, incumbent;
Police Juror District Five: Derek Marcantel and Kevin Veillon, incumbent;
Police Juror District Six: Eric Soileau incumbent and Cora Chretien-Veal;
Police Juror District Seven: Brian Vidrine, incumbent, David Ortego and Kevin "Cabon" Fontenot;
Police Juror District eight: Ryan "Leday" Williams, incumbent
Police Juror District 9: Daniel Arvie, incumbent.
Qualifying continues through 4:30pm Thursday at the Clerk of Court's Office.
Motorcyclist Dies in Evangeline Parish Crash
Ville Platte – At approximately 5:00 pm on August 5, 2019, Troopers from Louisiana State Police Troop I began investigating a two vehicle fatal crash that occurred on LA Hwy 10 near Crimson Lane in Evangeline Parish. The crash took the life of 39-year-old Able Barlow, Jr. of Ville Platte.
The initial investigation by State Police revealed that the crash occurred as Barlow was riding a 2002 Suzuki motorcycle southbound on LA Hwy 10. At the same time, 24-year-old Omesha Gallow was driving a 2011 Toyota Camry eastbound on Crimson Lane. Gallow failed to yield at the stop sign and was struck by the oncoming Suzuki as she entered the intersection.
Despite the fact that he was wearing a DOT approved safety helmet, Barlow received fatal injuries as a result of the crash and was pronounced deceased at a local hospital. Gallow and a passenger were properly restrained and were uninjured. Impairment is not suspected on the part of either driver. Gallow did provide a breath sample which indicated no alcohol in her system. A routine toxicology sample was taken from Barlow and was submitted for analysis. This crash remains under investigation.
Louisiana State Troopers wish to remind motorists to always make good decisions while in a motor vehicle. Making good choices such as never driving while impaired, always ensuring every occupant is properly restrained, avoiding all distractions, and obeying all traffic laws can often mean the difference between life and death. While not all crashes are survivable, Troopers encourage all riders to take an approved motorcycle safety course. For more information on the Louisiana Motorcycle Safety, Awareness, and Operator Training Program, visit http://www.lsp.org/motorcycle.html.
Evangeline Parish Police Jury Meeting
August 5, 2019
Certified Public Accountant Vic Slaven presented good news to the Evangeline Parish Police Jury at their meeting Monday night. His staff has completed the audit of the police jury financial records and announced that he had a "clean" report. The police jury records showed that it ended the 2018 Fiscal Year in the General Fund with a fund balance of $1.6 million dollars in unassigned funds.
Slaven announced that the parish was written up for the large number of past due sewer collection fees. However, he said the jury is teaming up with governmental and utility companies in an attempt to collect the delinquent sewer bills.
Slaven commended the jury "for doing a fine job. Keep it up."
Secretary Treasurer Donald Bergeron announced that a large portion of its budget , some $40,000 a month is going to pay for parish inmates being housed in prisons outside the parish because there is no room in the parish lockup.
A building inspector with the Rapides Parish Area Planning Commission announced that 52 new housing projects since the start of the year and eight new homes in the last month. He said our parish is showing good growth.
It was reported during their committee meetings that retention pnd application is still being reviewed. The proposed $1.9 million dollar project must show that there was at least $1.9 million dollars in damages were caused by drainage problems. Once the plan is approved, still another study must take place before it is determined how large a piece of property needs to be purchased.
In other action the police jury:
Received news from State Wildlife Agents that hidden litter cameras in the parish has charged with 31 people. Each of the 31 suspects were charged with littering carrying a fine of $150;
Received news from Secretary Treasurer Donald Bergeron that 72 nuisance abandoned properties were adjudicated to the parish by the court because the property owner did not pay the tax the property owed.
Received news that sales tax collections in July showed a decrease of $6046 over the same period a year ago.
The police jury approved purchasing two Railroad cars to be placed on the McGee road. The jury will purchase and install them the cars for drainage improvements to be reimbursed by the Vidrine Drainage Board.
Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue reports to KVPI News that police are searching for a shooting suspect.
On Wednesday night, July 31, 2019 at approximately 8:00 p.m., the Ville Platte Police Department responded to an incident where a male subject fired one shot into a vehicle injuring a five year old boy in the leg. The incident occurred in the 700 block of Edward K Thomas Street in Ville Platte. According to Chief Lartigue, the suspect has been identified as Quantavis Durgin age 17 whose last known address is 108 Reverend E. D. Alfred Street, Ville Platte. Durgin is wanted on the charge of attempted second degree murder in the shooting incident.
If you know the whereabouts of Durgin, you are asked to notify the Ville Platte Police Department immediately at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue reports shots fired and requests information.
On July 28, 2019 at approximately 2:44 a.m. Officers with the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a report of shots fired at a business located in the 200 block of Tate Cove Road. Upon arrival Officers discovered that numerous shots had been fired from the parking lot of one business towards multiple people and also the business located across Tate Cove Road. As Officers, Two Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Deputies and a Louisiana State Trooper began clearing the parking lot they were informed that two vehicles were damaged by bullets and two black males received injuries from gunfire. One male was shot in his lower torso and was transported from the Bunkie Hospital to Rapides Regional Medical Center and was released later that day. The second male was injured by a fragment in his lower torso and was treated at Mercy Regional Medical Center and later released. As the scene was being processed it was noted that there were multiple caliber casings found in the area which indicated multiple shooters.
Detectives learned that shortly after numerous shots were fired a black male wearing dark jeans and no shirt, entered one of the businesses and was in possession of a firearm. Detectives are seeking information on the identity of this person. Detectives are also seeking to identify the driver of the white vehicle matching the description of the suspect vehicle. The vehicle may possibly have bullet holes in it.
At approximately 3:45 Officers were dispatched to an apartment complex in the 800 block of North Latour Street in reference to shots fired. Upon arrival Officers discovered two vehicles with damages received from bullets. Witnesses reported seeing a white four door SUV or truck in the area as shots were fired. At 5:30 in the evening Officers received a call that a black male was in the emergency room with a gunshot wound to his buttock area. The male was treated and released to follow up with a specialist. He also had multiple gun shots holes in his vehicle.
Chief Lartigue would like to thank the Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Office and the Louisiana State Police for their quick response and assistance.
Chief Lartigue is asking anyone with information on either of these two incidents to contact the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Evangeline Chamber Executive Director Renee Brown announced a list of nominees for the awards banquet to be announced August 27 at the Ville Platte Civic Center. Chamber members will be voting on the following nominees:
Business Person of the Year: Bridgette Balfa of E.P.I.C. Insurance; Cody Vidrine of Ace Hardware; Eugene Burge of Savoy Medical Center; Jay Geilow of Café Evangeline; Kyle Fontenot of Pine Prairie Energy and Mark Layne with KVPI.
Those nominated for Business Person of the Year under 40: Malerie Veillon of Joyful Jane Photography and Brand Photographer for Holistic Wellness Leaders; Phillip Cavins of Prairie Culture Farms and Under Pressure; and Ross Lafleur of Kary's Roux.
Those nominated for Business of the Year: Butler Tree Service; Café Evangeline; I.S.S.-Information Systems Solutions; T-Boy's Meat Market and Grocery and Savoy Cancer Center.
Those nominated for Economic Development Person or Organization of the Year: Evangeline Parish Arts Council, Evangeline Parish Foundation and Valerie Cahill.
Also to be announced will be award winners for Ville Platte Man and Woman of the Year.
For more information please contact the chamber of commerce office at 337-363-1878.
Community leaders and members of the public attended a special meeting of "Project Engage" today at the Civic Center in Ville Platte. Dr. Geoff Stewart, U.L. Lafayette Moody Endowed Chair for Regional Business Development, presented a summary of the "Project Engage" reports completed by U.L. MBA consultant teams. The student teams met with community residents and leaders from Ville Platte and the parish and formulated their reports. The U.L. Team is comprised of the Louisiana Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Center with Dr. Geoff Stewart and Dr. Gwen Fontenot along with some 37 students. The three areas of study dealt with Main Street Revitalization, Industrial Development and Tourism.
On the subject of Downtown, Stewart said "Bringing Ville Platte' downtown like it was at one time is doable, but it will require a lot of time and effort." Among the suggestions by the student groups is to continue having farmers markets and planning downtown musical events. They also suggested incorporating the downtown antique shops and scheduling special antique events to draw shoppers downtown. They also focused on the need to improve the sidewalks and lighting in the downtown area.
The student team noted that Ville Platte is fortunate to have a certified site at the Industrial Park along with a number of industries in our parish.
On the topic of Tourism, the students suggested formulating a "driving trail" for day trip visitors to come view areas of interest in our parish. Stewart said Evangeline Parish is blessed with our food and music.
Among the suggestions made at the end:
--have a campaign urging citizens to stay here and spend their money in the Ville Platte Evangeline Parish area;
--remind citizens to clean their front yards and don't litter.
In closing, Dr. Stewart urged those in attendance and the citizens of Ville Platte and Evangeline parish to "continue to be engaged be proud of your culture, food and music, be you and tell your story and stand up and make the changes we need to make."
Ville Platte Rotary Club Meeting
July 16, 2019
Evangeline Parish 9-1-1 Director, Liz Hill, appeared before the Rotary Club Tuesday and explained a brief report on The Parish Emergency Plan which is an update with The National Weather Report every 4 hours and to do everything possible to have our town as safe as possible. She also spoke of The Pet Plan in which those with pets during a hurricane has the right for resources in order to house their pets. Examples of pet housing is the Mega Shelter in Alexandria, LA. And Evangeline Parish Shelter at the Chauncey Pitre Barn. Those pets include dogs, cats, and certain other domestic animals that require all updated shots and a cage/kennel.
During a storm, The Evangeline Parish 9-1-1 takes 4 conference calls:
Two calls with the State.
Two updates from The National Weather Service.
Liz also spoke about The State of Emergency System in which needs to be completed in order for reimbursement from FEMA and in order to bring supplies and services through to the ones in need. It also allows facility availability to house residents in need after a natural disaster. The damage Assessment for FEMA will be July 17th 2019
In other business, Michael Lombas from the Evangeline Parish School Board Central Office stated that we will be welcoming and housing Two French Immerse Teachers new to Evangeline Parish. While they will be housed and supplied with the essentials needed to be settled into our hometown but are still in need of common household items such as dishes, towels etc. If you would like to donate please call the Central Office.
In other action, Mayor Jennifer Vidrine stated that through documentation, it was estimated that 15 inches of rain business, was accumulated in Evangeline Parish.
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from two representatives of the Evangeline Parish Public Library at their weekly luncheon at the Family Life Center. The guest speakers were Suzie Lemoine, Library outreach coordinator and Acting Librarian Yvonne Lavergne.
Lavergne went through many of the daily and weekly activities that are going on at the Ville Platte Library as well at its branches.
The Summer Reading program is in full swing at all of the library branches for young people and adults with special guest entertainers.
There is an active French Table program adults wishing to converse or learn to speak in French every Monday at 3;30. There is also a French class for children at the same every Monday afternoon. On Tuesday there is story time for children at 3:30pm and a crocheting class at 5;00pm. Wednesday at 4;00pm there is a a books and beyond youth club program at 4;00pm and crafting classes. On Thursdays at 1;00pm there is a quilting class.
The library has a a board game night on the First Tuesday of each month and a Family Movie night on the last Tuesday night of each month.
Suzie Lemoine announced that the annual Book Fest is planned to take place October 25.
Ville Platte Mayor Jennifer Vidrine announced that sand bags will be available at city hall for those wanting to have some for the expected stormy weather this weekend.
Superintendent of Schools Darwan Lazard announced Wednesday to the Evangeline Parish School Board the following administrative appointments for the new school year which begins in August.
The new appointments include: Rico Guillory-Principal at Mamou High School, Kim Manuel-Assistant Principal at Mamou High School, Debbie Soileau-Principal at Vidrine Elementary, Alice LeJeune-Principal at Pine Prairie High School, Sarah Hamlin Lafleur-Assistant Principal at Ville Platte High School, Chenile Tezeno-Assistant Principal at Ville Platte High School, Dawn Hardy-Assistant Principal at Evangeline Central, Mindy Janot-Assistant Principal at Basile High at Basile High, Keith Scott-Special Ed Supervisor and Anita West-Curriculum and Operational Facilitator in Science and Social Studies.
Superintendent Lazard congratulated Child Welfare Supervisor Phillip Buller for receiving a statewide award: the Wilfred Broussard award for his outstanding service and dedication to child welfare. Buller has been serving in that position since 2009.
In other business, the school board:
Heard from Chief Financial Officer Amy Lafleur that the school district will save some $884 a month by approving a quote with Copy and Camera for the lease of 12 copiers;
Renewed the contract of Ville Platte Elementary Principal Sally Moreau for a two year term.