Evangeline Parish School Board Meeting
January 15, 2020
Certified Public Accountant Vic Slaven of the C.P.A. firm, Kolder, Slaven and Company on Wednesday presented the findings of its audit of the financial records of the Evangeline Parish School Board during the board's meeting. Slaven gave the board a "clean" opinion with no findings. He called it a good report. The ending fund balance in the general fund for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2019 showed the school district having $8.6 million dollars in its account.
A member of the audience, Rufus Serailles, addressed the board after the audit report to complain about a salary discrepancy. He asked board members if they were aware that certain members of the school board office staff received a $6,000 a year pay raise while teachers only received a $1000 pay raise.
School Board Legal Advisor, Assistant District Attorney Betsy Jackson, told Serailles that he was out of order since his subject matter did not deal directly with the subject of the audit. Board President Wayne Dardeau suggested to the speaker that the issue he raised would have to be brought at another time.
Chief Financial Officer Amy Lafleur announced that two schools in the Basile area will pilot a new program using school accounting software. The software will offer the option for parents to pay fees on line rather than cash to the schools. It is expected other schools will soon be offering the payment options as well.
School Superintendent Darwan Lazard praised CFO Amy Lafleur and her staff for the good audit report findings. She has been serving in that capacity for the school district for 19 years. Lazard also announced that she has been named as new Finance Secretary to the Louisiana School Business Officers Association.
Amy Lafleur reported that sales tax collections dropped by $18,000 over the same time a year earlier for the month of December. However, overall collections, year to date still show a healthy balance with over $219,000 more that the same period a year earlier.
Supt. Lazard introduced two new appointments: Miss Willie Goodley will serve as Interim Principal at Ville Platte High . She has over 40 years in education with 20 years serving at Basile and Mamou schools;
Cherie Fontenot will serve as new Acting Elementary Supervisor for the school district. She has served more than 27 years in education. She was named as Louisiana Elementary Principal of the Year and worked at James Stephens Montessori School.
Mr. Lazard also announced that Tom Prudhomme was recently appointed in the maintenance crew in AC, Heating and Electrical work.
It was announced that Monday is a holiday for Martin Luther King Jr. Day while Tuesday will be a day of Professional Development where students will not attend classes.
As per Clerk of Court, Randy Deshotel, candidates that have qualified as of 4:30 p.m., Friday, January 10, 2020, to run for office in the upcoming April 4, 2020 election are as follows:
City Marshall, City Court, City of Ville Platte
Lisa M. Doucet
Horace Johnson, Jr.
Lucian McKinney, Jr.
Brian Keith Fontenot
Democratic Parish Executive Committee, Member at Large
Chasity Ann Vidrine
Kelli Ritter Buller
Phillip Allen Lemoine
Brian James Ardoin
John B. Vidrine
Democratic Parish Executive Committee, District 1
Democratic State Central Committee, Office "A"
Jennifer L. Vidrine
Democratic State Central Committee, Office "B"
Republican Parish Executive Committee, Member at Large
Bryan Kirk Vidrine
Warren James Lafleur
Toni Lyon Aguillard
Republican Parish Executive Committee, District 1
Warren James LaFleur, Jr.
Republican Parish Executive Committee, District 4
Opal Andrus Johnson
Qualifying brought more candidates on Day Two
January 9, 2020
Evangeline Parish Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel informed KVPI News that the following candidates qualified in his office today for the various offices on Day Two of qualifying for the April 4 special election:
Member at Large for the Evangeline Parish Republican Executive Committee:
Kenny Burgess, Bryan Kirk Vidrine, Warren James Lafleur and Toni Lyon Aguillard;
District One, Evangeline Parish Republican Executive Committee: Warren James Lafleur.
Qualifying ends Friday at the Clerk of Court's Office in the courthouse
Five people qualified today for Ville Platte City Marshal
January 8, 2020
Qualifying for Ward One City Marshal began with five candidates officially qualifying for the office in the special April 4 election. The election is being held to fill the unexpired term of the late Ronald T. Doucet. Among the candidates who qualified with Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel in the courthouse include: Adam Toussaint, Lisa Doucet, Horace Johnson Jr., Lucian McKinney Jr and Brian Keith Fontenot. The qualifying continues through Friday at the Clerk of Court's office.
Also qualifying today for positions in the parish and state levels of the Democratic Party: Chasity Vidrine qualified for the Democratic Parish Executive Committee Member at Large while Jennifer L. Vidrine qualified for Office A in the Democratic State Central Committee.
Driver Killed in Two-Vehicle Crash in St. Landry Parish
Prairie Ronde – Shortly after 12:15 p.m. on January 5, 2020, Troopers from Louisiana State
Police Troop I began investigating a two-vehicle crash on LA Hwy 103 at McGuffy Road in St.
Landry Parish. The crash took the life of 57-year-old Stephanie Soileau of Ville Platte.
The initial investigation by State Police revealed that the crash occurred as Soileau was driving
North on LA 103, in a 2014 Nissan Maxima, when she failed to negotiate a curve and crossed the
centerline. After doing so, her vehicle struck a southbound 2005 Chevrolet Avalanche.
Soileau was restrained at the time of the crash. She was transported to a local hospital in critical
condition where she ultimately succumbed to her injuries. The driver of the Avalanche was
properly restrained and was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries. Impairment is
unknown but standard toxicology samples were obtained from both drivers. This crash remains
This marks the first fatality crash of 2020 for LSP Troop I.
Louisiana State Troopers wish to remind motorists that making good choices while in motor
vehicles such as observing all traffic laws, never driving while impaired or distracted, and always
ensuring every occupant is properly restrained can often mean the difference between life and
Sheriff Eddie Soileau, of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Office has released the following:
Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Department is relieved after capturing a white male subject identified as Timothy Kordish a known suspect involved in a recent Carjacking at a camp outside the city limits of Mamou, LA.
Thursday January 2, 2020 Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Office Deputies apprehended Kordish safely and without incident at a residence on the 1200 block of Baldridge Road.
Initially on Thursday, December 19, 2019, Deputies were called out for the theft of a motor vehicle. After a brief gathering of information it was learned that a white male subject identified as Timothy Kordish had taken William Reed's vehicle without consent. Reed had invited Kordish to spend the day with him and his girlfriend at a camp off the Bond Road. Prior to departing while Reed was not present in the vehicle, Kordish armed himself with a rifle. He then threatened Reed's girlfriend with the rifle while they were waiting on Reed to return. At some point she was able to exit the vehicle without harm. After which Kordish drove off in the vehicle and didn't return. The vehicle was later recovered.
An Affidavit for Arrest and an Arrest Warrant was immediately authored for Carjacking and Aggravated Assault with a Firearm. The Warrant was approved and signed by 13th Judicial Judge Chuck West.
Kordish is currently being held at the Evangeline Parish jail on a $50,000.00 bond.
Ville Platte City Council Meeting
December 23, 2019
The Ville Platte City Council, in a special meeting today (Tuesday) approved a request from Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue to enter into a contract with Evangeline Parish 9-1-1 Communications District to provide dispatching services for the city police department.
The chief said the action will save the city some $100,000 a year. All but one police department dispatchers will remain on in another capacity such as jailers.
Chief Lartigue addressed concerns about the police station remaining open after hours. He reported that the police station will remain open and there will be a phone for the public's use in the police department lobby for emergency usage.
He expects the move over to 9-1-1 will take place in the next few months.
New director of Evangeline Chamber of Commerce and Evangeline Parish Tourist Commission to take over January 1
VILLE PLATTE, La., December 18, 2019
The board members of the Evangeline Chamber of Commerce and the Evangeline Parish Tourist Commission are pleased to announce that Ms. Erin Hoffpauir will begin serving as the Executive Director of both organizations at the beginning of 2020.
Erin, an Evangeline Parish native, grew up on her family's farm in Vidrine. Erin has almost a decade of experience in multiple facets of retail management. Her experiences focus on business development, customer service and retention, and employee supervision.
With a heart for animals, Erin has worked directly with animal rescue organizations to raise funds for housing and care of displaced animals. She plans to put her fund-raising skills to work in her new position in Evangeline Parish.
Erin is a passionate, driven individual who plans to give her all to Evangeline Parish. She understands the needs and potentials of the communities in this heritage-rich area and looks forward to putting her experiences, training, and education to use with the Evangeline Chamber of Commerce and the Evangeline Parish Tourist Commission.
Hoffpauir fills the position following former executive director Renee Brown's departure to begin a new career with Mercy Regional Medical Center.
2019 Food Net Food Drive
Dec. 10, 2019
Despite the winter weather conditions and a power outage, local and area residents braved the inclement weather to make a donation at local drop off locations for the Food Net Food Drive.
Here in Ville Platte, the drop off location was at the Ville Platte Civic Center pavilion. Volunteers were there from 5;00am to 8:00pm to greet donors and remove the boxes of food from vehicles.
DJ Jude Dardeau provided holiday music for the volunteers throughout the day. KVPI was there during the morning with a live remote. TV 10 was there with a report.
At mid day, Gene Fontenot with the Christian Care and Share Center announced that monetary donations had already matched last year's total : $2000.
Other drop off locations included Mamou, Pine Prairie and Eunice.
Evangeline Parish Police Jury
December 10, 2019
The Evangeline Parish Police Jury held their annual all French meeting today (Tuesday) in the courthouse before a standing room only crowd of dignitaries, visitors and well-wishers. The all French meeting has become a tradition for the police jury and is the only police jury in the state that is conducting an official meeting in another language.
Police Juror Eric Soileau conducted the meeting for President Ryan LeDay Williams. Evangeline Parish Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel offered an opening prayer in French. The camp jammers Cajun music group performed the National Anthem.
The French Immersion students from Ville Platte and Mamou performed special Christmas songs sung in French.
Attorney Gilbert W. Aucoin and his wife, Margaret "Chicken" Aucoin announced to the group that the next Grand Hoorah Cajun music event is planned for April 17-24 at Chicot State Park. Margaret Aucoin announced that she will begin hosting classes in the new year to teach residents how to speak French. Musician Dave Johnson of Basile introduced the members of his musical group who entertained the crow in the foyer.
State Representative mike Huval thanked Supt. Of School Darwan Lazard for supporting and introducing the French Immersion program in Evangeline Parish schools. He urged residents to support our Cajun French heritage and not lose it.
The police jury recognized retired police jury Larry Buller who was in attendance. Buller served on the jury for 24 years and also served as president.
In other action the police jury:
--reappointed Greg Monier to the Mamou Fire District Board for another two year term;
--reappointed Randall Fruge and Albert Neil LeJeune to the Acadia-Evangeline Fire District for a two year term;
--reappointed Opal Johnson as a member to the Evangeline Tourism Board;
--recognized all of the public officials that included:
Senator Elect Heather Cloud; Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel; Assessor Dirk Deville, Judges Chuck West and Gary Ortego, Chataignier Mayor Justin Darbonne, District Attorney Trent Brignac, City Marshal Lisa Doucet, Sheriff Elect Charles Guillory, Rep. Mike Huval, Rep. Elect Rhonda Butler, Ville Platte Councilwoman Faye Lemoine, Ville Platte Mayor Jennifer Vidrine, Turkey Creek Mayor Phillip Cavins, Supt of Schools Darwan Lazard and Registrar of Voters Lucas Buller.
Ville Platte City Council
December 10, 2019
The Ville Platte City Council Tuesday, voted to deposit $209,174 to begin a reserve fund for future uses. The excess funds come from a Louisiana Workers Compensation dividend check. The council agreed to use $15,000 from the dividend to purchase equipment such as weed eaters and lawn mowers to be used in work projects. The city is planning to use inmate labor along with new workers to pursue those work projects.
Mayor Jennifer Vidrine said the city spent $26,000 more in November than it did in October. She blames the cost increase to the purchase of a new pump for a sewer lift station and repairs on a water well.
Mayor Jennifer Vidrine announced that the city will have a new free app for local residents to use with their smart phone . The app is called "Tips Ville Platte." Local residents can send a tip on a crime to police without giving their identity. The app should launch sometime in January.
In other action the Ville Platte City Council:
approved the appointment of Trojan Harrison as a new fulltime paid firefighter;
approved a mandatory 2 percent increase in pay for Ville Platte firefighters;
received a report from Fire Chief Chris Harrison that the month of November showed there were six structural fires, six grass fires and one vehicle fire for a total of 24 fire calls;
appointed Coach Lionel Anderson as new Mayor Pro Temp;
voted to call their January meeting to be held January 21 at 5;00pm;
approved eight more properties for demolition in the city limits;
voted to approve the sale of liquor for the Evangeline Arts Council sponsorship of a New Year's Eve dance;
received a police report from Chief Neal Lartigue: 299 calls in November, issued 19 citations, 39 arrests including 9 felony arrests and worked 38 traffic accidents.
Ville Platte Rotary Club December 3, 2019 The Ville Platte Rotary Club met today (Tuesday) at the Family Life Center. The guest speaker was Doug Ireland, executive director of the Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame is located in Natchitoches. Out of 150 sports figures nominated this year, eight were chosen to be inducted in Hall of Fame next year in June: Phil Robertson, Nick Saban, Charles Tillman, Angela Turner, Ronnie Coleman, Lou Dunbar, Joe Horn and Kerry Kittles. The Hall of Fame began by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association in 1958. There are three inductees from Evangeline Parish including Pine Prairie High Basketball Coach Leslie Gaudet, who won over 1000 games in his long career and never received a technical foul. Also in the Sports of Fame is Opelousas native Rod Milburn of Opelousas who won the 1972 Olympics in the 110 meter hurdles. He was the guest speaker of Rotarian Garland Forman. In other business, Rotary Club President Nicole Wenger announced the proposed slate of officers approved by the club to begin the new year in July: President Peter Strawitz; President Elect-Michael Lemoine; Vice President -Jimmy LeBlanc; Treasurer-Vic Slaven; Secretary- Susan Saunders. The board members will include: Annette Johnson, Larry Lachney, Dr. Jerry Veillon, Wayne Vidrine, Dr. Joey Soileau and Nicole Wenger. Wenger announced that the annual club Christmas social will be held Tuesday night Dec. 10 at 6;00pm at Café Evangeline. Due to the social, there will be no noon luncheon next week. She also reminded club members to turn in their toy donations and names of needy families for gift baskets.
Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue reports search for two suspects in separate incidents.
On November 20, 2019 Officers with the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a disturbance on East Jefferson Street where a male suspect forced his way inside of a residence and assaulted two people inside. After further investigation, an arrest warrant has been issued for Carlos Skinner age 37, last known address of 2517 2nd Street, Ville Platte. Skinner is wanted on one count of home invasion and one count of simple battery with other charges pending.
On September 15, 2019, Officers with the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a report of an altercation at a store on Edward Knotoe Thomas Street. During the altercation the suspect pulled a weapon on another male. After further investigation a warrant has been issued for Reonna Freeman age 21, last known address of 502 Dr. Carver Street, Ville Platte. Freeman is wanted on the charge of aggravated assault with a firearm.
If you have any information on the whereabouts of any of these suspects, you are asked to call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Ville Platte Police Chief Lartigue asks for information on suspect.
October 30, 2019 Officers responded to a report of an attempted armed robbery of restaurant located on West Main Street. Upon arrival Officers learned that a black male suspect entered the restaurant and attempted to rob the employees. The suspect was unsuccessful and fled the area on foot. A reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of the suspect involved.
If you have any information regarding the attempted armed robbery, you are asked to call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Ville Platte Rotary Club hears from LSU Eunice Athletic Director Jeff Willis
November 19, 2019
The Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from LSU Eunice Athletic Director and Baseball Coach Jeff Willis. Coach Willis is one of the winningest coaches in baseball. In his 17 years with Bengal baseball, he has amassed a record of 779 wins and 178 losses, that is an 81 percent winning rate. He has coached six national championship baseball teams and has won numerous coaching awards.
Coach Willis told club members that the accolades "really doesn't matter". He said his primary goal and aim every day is to help young people reach their full potential.
The coach said he is excited to report that the addition of three additional sports being played at LSU Eunice: Men and Women soccer and Men's Basketball.
As a result of the new soccer programs, it has drawn 20 international students to the school from such countries as Sweden, Denmark, Spain and Brazil. The coach shared a personal story about a student from Iraq who said he was being persecuted in his home country because of his family's Christian faith.
The new soccer programs are doing well with the men's team currently listed as #6 in the country and are the regional champs after only two years. The ladies program is currently #9 in the country in division two.
The men's basketball program currently has a 6 and 1 record this season. Last year the men's baseball team had a 51-8 record. Both the women's basketball and women's softball programs have new coaches.
Coach Willis was the special guest of Rotarian Mitch Fontenot.
Ville Platte Police Chief Lartigue reports break in and burglaries of a local school.
The Ville Platte Police Department has responded to two calls from James Stephens Montessori where a break in occurred on both occasions. The first incident occurred on November 12, 2019 where a nurse's office, classroom and maintenance van were broken into. Windows were busted on the classrooms and maintenance vehicle. Items stolen were a battery powered drill with accessories, television, apple play box and mini fridge.
In the second incident it is reported on November 18, 2019, that eight or more classroom windows were broken and the suspect(s) entered these rooms and started gathering items to take. It is unclear at this time if anything was removed. Both incidents are under investigation.
Both break-ins appeared to have happened on weekends. Anyone noticing anyone suspicious in the area of James Stephens Montessori over the weekend of November 9th -12th or 16th- 18th are asked to contact the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.
Complete but unofficial election returns from Saturday's election shows that Charles Guillory was elected as sheriff in Evangeline Parish. He defeated opponent Brian Ardoin: 7426 votes to Ardoin's 4800 votes. There was no incumbent in the race.
In the Police Juror District One race, incumbent Rocky Rider was defeated b y challenger Keith Saucier. The final vote total was : Saucier receiving 816 votes to Rider's 732 votes.
In the Police Juror District 7 race, incumbent Bryan Vidrine with 929 votes beat challenger David Ortego who got 618 votes.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards was reelected to a second term in office over Republican Challenger Eddie Rispone. The final state wide vote total showed Edwards had 51 percent of the vote to Rispone's 49 percent of the vote. Here isn Evangeline Parish, Rispone was the top vote getter with 61 percent of the vote to Edwards 38 percent.
For Secretary of State, incumbent Kyle Ardoin was reelected to another term in office with 59 percent of the statewide vote over challenger Gwen Collins Greenup who received 41 percent of the vote. Here in Evangeline Parish the vote totals showed Ardoin, a native of Evangeline Parish, getting 71 percent of the vote whole his opponent receiving 28 percent of the vote.
All four of Pine Prairie's millage tax renewal propositions were approved by voters. The Eunice Gravity Drainage District #9 millage proposition which includes portions of St. Landry and Evangeline Parishes was approved by voters. Here in Evangeline Parish, the district includes the Duralde area failed by a vote of 25-3.
KVPI-FM was there broadcasting complete election returns with Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel.
Rotary Meeting Hears Book Author
November 12, 2019
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from Glen Duncan, the author of a new book "The Modern History of the Louisiana Pelican Flag". Duncan is a former journalist and a civil engineer.
Duncan gave an interesting tale on the history of our state flag and how the current design came to be. Through his research, he discovered that an 8th grade F.F.A. student who prompted the state to amend a law on the official state flag in 2005. The flag at the time did not have the three drops of blood as required in the legal description of the flag's insignia. It shows the pelican wounding itself and shedding drops of blood to feed her young.
Duncan began researching and discovered there were many different state flags and the state motto as well through the years. The motto is "Union, Justice and Confidence."
He realized the pelican used in the state flag and motto came from one of three sources: Religious theme- The original "Pelican in Piety" showing the mother pelican feeding her young is still used in many Catholic scenes; Tradition or Folklore- research shows a news article going back to 1813 about pelicans in Louisiana; Masonic Symbol-the pelican is used in the 18th degree masonic symbol.
It took about 100 years in 1902 for the Louisiana Secretary of State to publish the criteria of the state seal.
Evangeline Parish Library Outreach Director Suzie Lemoine introduced the guest speaker. They were both guests of Rotarian Leonard Fontenot.
Club President Nicole Wenger reminded club members to turn in the names of needy families for gift baskets. The annual Christmas Social is set for December 10.
It was one of the biggest celebrations for Veteran's Day in Mamou in many years. The weather was spring like. Crowds of people lined up on both sides of Sixth Street to view the extra long Veteran's Day parade that included marching bands from Mamou High and Basile High, classic cars, political candidates and queens.
The crowds of people poured around the speaker's stand on the grounds of the American Legion Post 123. The emcee was Post Commander Charles Perdices. The guest speaker was Julian Green, commander of American Legion Post 551 in Lake Charles. One of the major fund raisers of the year, the cake auction, took place with guest auctioneer Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel. More than a dozen cakes as well as bags of pecans and satsumas were all auctioned. Two cakes, each brought the highest bids, R$130 each. One was a coconut cake while the other cake was honey bun cake.
State Representative Elect Rhonda Butler and State Senator Elect Heather Cloud both spoke to the crowds. Evangeline Parish Sheriff candidates Charles Guillory and Brian Ardoin also spoke..
Here are the Mamou elementary show box float winners according to the judges: First Grade- First Place- Noah Granger; Second Place- Jaylen Richard; Third Place- Bentley Lavergne; Third Grade- First Place- Blaine Duplechain; Second Place- Riley Rudd; Third Place- Jeremy Semien; Fifth Grade winners- First Place- Camille Bieber and Second Place- Jekila LaSalle.
KVPI's Mike Perron and Mark Layne covered both the parade and memorial program at the Legion post with a live remote.
The Ville Platte Rotary Club, today (Tuesday), heard from guest speaker, Zack Hager, with One Acadiana, the nine parish regional economic agency in South West Louisiana that includes Evangeline Parish. Hager works on helping local agencies and property owners develop their property as a certified site by the state for business and industry.
He reported that currently Evangeline Parish has one certified industrial site and that is at the Ward One Industrial Site, north of Ville Platte that is industry ready. There are 15 such sites in the region. The cost to do the study and prepare a site to become certified is $40-50,000 and takes 4-6 months to complete.
Hager was the special guest of Rotarian Mark Suellentrop.
In other business, the club members:
--heard from Mayor Jennifer Vidrine announce that Governor John Bel Edwards will be visiting Ville Platte High School Friday afternoon to recognize the school for being named as one of the top schools by U.S News and World Report;
--was notified that the Evangeline Chamber of Commerce and the Tourism Commission is advertising for the position of executive director;
--was reminded that club members need to turn in the names of needy families by November 12 for gift baskets for the holidays.
KVPI and the Ville Platte Gazette teamed up tonight to co-sponsor a political forum targeting the two run-off candidates for Evangeline Parish Sheriff: Charles Guillory and Brian Ardoin. The free event took place at the Ville Platte Civic Center with a large audience in attendance. The emcee was Ville Platte's woman of the year: Connie Lamke. The questioners were Garland Foreman, publisher of the Ville Platte Gazette and Mark Layne, General Manager of KVPI AM/FM. The candidates were each given ten questions to answer plus given a five minutes closing statement. KVPI streamed the forum live on our website at firstname.lastname@example.org and will be loaded as a podcast on our website Tuesday while the Gazette had it on Facebook live.
A total of 559 Evangeline Parish voters voted early today on the first day at the Registrar of Voters office in the courthouse. Thanks to Registrar of Voters Lucas Buller for the voter information. Early voting continues through Saturday for the November 16 runoff election for races such as Governor, Sheriff and two police jury elections. Let your voice be heard, go vote!!!
The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from District 6200 Rotary Governor Harold Domingue of Lafayette. He has been a member of Rotary in Lafayette since 1988.
Domingue met with the club's board and Club President Nicole Wenger earlier in the day and reviewed their activities for the year.
He reported to the local club members that Rotary is a worldwide organization with over 1.2 million members in 35,000 clubs. The organization is finding its fastest growth in Asia.
There are 52 clubs in District 6200 which comprises South Louisiana. The district is one of 31 districts in Zone 31 while there are 34 zones worldwide.
Mark Malone, President of Rotary International is urging clubs to grow locally and to keep members active in the club.
One of the proudest achievements is nearly the totyal eradication of polio on the face of the earth. Polio cases have been reported in only three countries: Nigeria, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Rotary International along with the assistance of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have spent over two billion dollars worldwide on eradicating polio.
Domingue urged the local club to apply for additional Rotary Foundation grants. This past year, the club applied and received for $9000 grant to help fund improvements to a Men's Shelter in Opelousas.
Dr. Phillipe Vidrine was the high bidder in purchasing a basket of goods from the Deridder Rotary Club. The funds will be donated to Rotary International. The local club donated a basketful of prizes that will be auctioned at the next club Domingue visits. Special thanks to Tony Marks of the Ville Platte Gazette for the photo.
Local High Schools Honored on a National level and School Board Introduces a Revised Assignment Policy
It was clear by Wednesday's Evangeline Parish School Board meeting attendance that many held strong feelings regarding the assignment policy that was sent for revision during the last school board meeting. There were so many people in the board room that many were left standing or simply sitting on the floor. The proposed assignment policy does not allow for school principals to work with immediate family members on their staff unless the immediate family member was employed at the school for at least one year prior to the principal or department head's appointment and a Disqualification Plan (which provides an alternate evaluator for the employee) is approved by the Louisiana Board of Ethics.
Retired Basile High School Principal, Georgie Courville spoke out about hardships that the adoption of such a policy would impose on the schools in small communities such as Basile and gave testament to the instances in which had no choice but to hire an immediate family member because there simply were no other educators to fill teaching positions at the school. She argued that contrary to what some people believe, principals are less lenient when supervising family members on their staff than they are with other teachers. Mrs. Courville asked the Board to consider these statements before voting on whether or not to adopt this policy.
Ultimately, the School Board members voted to only introduce the policy, request that the Ethics Board provide a written opinion on the revised policy, and to vote on whether or not to adopt the revised policy once that Ethics Board review is received. Special Counsel, Jon Guice advised that if the Ethics Board agrees to provide a written opinion on the policy the School Board may not have that document to bring to a vote until December.
Administrators from Basile High School, Mamou High School, Pine Prairie High School, and Ville Platte High School were honored at the meeting for their national recognition by the US News and World Report for their academic performance. Mamou High is ranked #102 in the state of Louisiana, Ville Platte High is ranked #111, Basile High is ranked # 158, and Pine Prairie High is #162 in the state. These rankings are based on college readiness, math and reading proficiency, graduation rate, etc.
Ville Platte High School principal, Melanie Moore was presented with a plaque as this is the school's first year being recognized for a ranking. All of the administrators were commended for their hard work and dedication to improving their schools and the lives of their students.
The next Board meeting will be held on October 30, 2019 at 6:00 p.m.
Evangeline Parish Election Results
October 12, 2019
In complete but unofficial election returns from the Evangeline Parish Clerk of Court's Office, with beautiful Fall weather voted in high numbers in the various races from local to statewide races.
In the State Senator's race in District 28, where there were no incumbent, former Turkey Creek Mayor Heather Cloud defeated both of her opponents to win. Cloud received 63% of the vote or 22,282 votes. Coming in second was Robert Johnson with 24% of the vote and State Rep. Bernard LeBas received 13% of the vote.
In the race for State Representative, Rhonda Butler won the election and defeated both of her opponents with 60 percent of the vote or 8880 votes. Coming in second was Phil Cowboy LeMoine with 27 percent of the vote and Taranza Arvie with 13 percent of the vote.
For Sheriff in Evangeline Parish, there will be a run-off between the top vote getter, Charles Guillory who received35.9 percent of the vote or 4146 votes and second place finisher Brian Ardoin with 22 percent or 2637 votes. Coming in third was Assessor Dirk Deville with 22.6 percent of the vote or 2616 votes, Jamie Fontenot came in next with 1177 votes, Ville Platte Chief Neal Lartigue with 499 votes, Michael Kevin Fontenot with 371 votes and Joe Brady with 101 votes.
For Assessor, Chris Guillory was elected with 51.1 percent of the vote or 5653 votes to challenger Josh Fontenot who got 5355 votes.
For Police Juror in District One: Incumbent Rocky Rider was the top vote getter with 41.2 percent of the vote o r 583 votes and will go into a runoff with Keith Saucier who got 525 votes.
For Police Juror in District 3- incumbent Ryan Ardoin won re election with 70 percent of the vote or 694 votes over challenger Clifton Fruge who got 290 votes.
For Police Juror in District Four, incumbent Lamar Johnson was re elected with 63 percent of the vote or 859 votes against his opponent Robert Johnson who had 504 votes.
For Police Juror in District 5, incumbent Kevin Veillon was re elected with 58 percent of the vote or 943 votes compared to his opponent, Derek Marcantel who got 658 votes.
For Police Juror in District Six, Eric Soileau, the incumbent was re elected with 62 percent of the vote or 879 votes with second place finisher Donald Vidrine receiving 282 votes and coming in third place Cora Chrietien Veal receiving 251 votes;
For Police Juror in District 7, incumbent Bryan Vidrine was the top vote getter receiving 45.8 percent of the vote or 680 votes and will go into a runoff with David Ortego who got 443 votes and Kevin Cabon Fontenot received 361 votes;
For Police Juror in District 9, incumbent Daniel Arvie was re elected with 60 percent of the vote receiving 760 votes and his opponent Shawn Gallow receiving 488 votes.
For Governor in Evangeline Parish: incumbent John Bel Edwards was the top vote getter with 35.4 percent of the vote or 4105 vote, Eddie Rispone coming out second with 31.6 percent . Both men will go into a runoff. Coming out third was Congressman Ralph Abraham with 3483 votes. Patrick Landry got 139 votes, Gary Landrieu and ralph Dantzler each got 89 votes.
For Lt. Governor in Evangeline Parish, Incumbent Billy Nungesser received 74 percent of the vote or 7982 votes and his opponent , Willie Jones got 2700 votes.
For Secretary of State, incumbent Kyle Ardoin ws the top vote getter in Evangeline Parish with 5980 votes or 55 percent of the votes. Gwen Collins Greenup got 2411 votes, Thomas Kennedy received 1681 votes and Amanda Jennings Smith got 640 votes;
For Attorney general, Incumbent Jeff Landry got 76 percent of the vote or 8245 votes compared to Ike Jackson Jr with 2486 votes.
For State Treasurer, incumbent John Shroeder with 67 percent of the vote or7167 votes was the top vote getter in the parish, next was Derrick Edwards with 2896 votes and Teresa Kenny with 484 votes;
For Commissioner of Agriculture, the top vote getter in the parish was incumbent was Mike Strain with 57 percent of the vote or 6108 votes, Next was Charlie Greer with 1413 votes, Marguerite Green with 1193 votes and Peter Williams with 528 votes.
For Commissioner of Insurance, incumbent Jim Donelon was the top vote getter in the parish with 61 percent of the vote or 5922 votes. His opponent Tim Temple received 3780 votes.
For BESE Board member in District Five: Ashley Ellis was the top vote getter with 3690 votes and opponent Stephen Chapman with 2997 votes.
For BESE Board Members in District 8- Preston Castille was the top vote getter with 1475 votes, Next was Jonathan Loveall with 565 votes, Next Chakesha Web Scott with 423 votes and then Vereta Tanner Lee with 361 votes;
In the Constitutional Amendments in Evangeline Parish:
Amendment #1- for Tax Exemptions for the Outer Continental Shelf : Yes votes 4494 and No votes 5046 ;
Amendment #2- to amend Educational Excellence Fund Yes votes 4075 and No votes 5405 votes;
Amendment #3- Remedy for Unconstitutional Tax Paid, 4851 voted Yes and 4595 voted No;
Amendment #4- allow New Orleans Property tax exemption, yes 2557 and No votes 6914.