Local News Archives for 2017-12

KVPI FM off Air

KVPI FM 92.5 is off the air this morning because of ice on its antennas. Our regular programming including French News and La Tasse de Cafe will continue on KVPI 1050 AM and on kvpionline.com . We hope to be back on the air by mid morning. We thank you for you for your understanding.

Local boxer interviewed on KVPI Thursday at 12:30pm

Tune in to an interview with Brandon Arvie, age 25 of Mamou Thursday at 12;30pm on KVPI AM and FM to talk about his boxing career. Arvie went pro a few months and knocked out his first opponent in the first round. In a boxing card Friday night at the Rapdies Parish Coliseum, Arvie will be facing a fighter from Mexico. Also in the photo is one of the fight sponsors, Robert Stevens.

KVPI Interview with Book Author

Check out our special interview with Chris Russo Blackwood, author of the best selling new book "My Brother's Keeper:A Thirty Year Quest to Bring Two Killers to Justice". It is the true life story of Gary Kirgan, who along with his brother, Ted, were co owners of a chain of Sonic Drive In's in Acadiana including Ville Platte. Gary went missing 30 years ago. After a 30 year search by his brother, Ted, authorities were able to find and convict the two killers. You can hear this special interview Wednesday at 12:30pm on KVPI AM and FM. It is a great read.

William "Bill" Fontenot named new Cleco C.E.O.

William “Bill” Fontenot named CEO of Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC


PINEVILLE, La. – Dec. 21, 2017 – Today, the board of managers of Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC announced William “Bill” Fontenot as the new chief executive officer.  Fontenot is a former resident of Ville Platte and is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Glenn Fontenot of Ville Platte.

     Fontenot most recently served as chief operating officer of Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC and interim CEO of Cleco Power.  He will assume the role of CEO of Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC and all subsidiaries, including Cleco Power, as well as join the board of managers effective Jan. 1, 2018.   

    “Bill was selected following a competitive, nationwide search that began in March of this year,” said Peggy Scott, board chair and interim CEO of Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC.  “His proven leadership abilities and diverse utility experience will lead our company forward.” 

    Scott will resign as interim CEO of Cleco Corporate Holdings LLC effective Dec. 31, 2017, and will remain chair of the Cleco board of managers.

    Fontenot began his Cleco career in 1986 as an engineer and has worked in various capacities at the company including business development, commercial operations and utility operations.  Highlights of his tenure include the management, development and restructuring efforts of generation projects valued at over $900 million, as well as leading the development and construction of the $1 billion power plant, Madison 3.  For the last six years, Fontenot has served as chief operating officer overseeing generation, transmission and distribution asset operations and investment. 

    “I am humbled by the board’s selection and am thankful for the opportunity to lead Cleco, the company where I have worked for over 30 years,” said Fontenot.  “With the help of our 1,200 loyal and dedicated employees, we will continue to safely serve our 288,000 customers while sustaining and growing the company.” 

    Fontenot serves on the boards of the Council for a Better Louisiana, Association of Edison Illuminating Companies, Southeastern Electric Exchange and the Central Louisiana Community Foundation.  He is a member of AEIC Power Generation Committee, Central Louisiana Manufacturing Managers Council, St. Rita Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus. 

    Fontenot earned a degree in electrical engineering at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.

Police Jury Approves Budget and Gives Employee Raises

The Evangeline Parish Police Jury, during a special budget meeting Wednesday, approved a 5% raise to office and road crew workers, and by a vote of 5-3, a second motion was approved to add adjustment raises for three office employees along with a raise for Police Jury Secretary Treasurer, Donald Bergeron. A 5% increase was approved for Rachel West, a 13% increase for Karen Rider, and a 15% increase for Debbie Faught. The adjustment raises for the three employees was proposed so that salaries would better reflect years of service. Included in the salary raise is Police Jury Secretary Treasurer, Donald Bergeron, who will be receiving a 15% salary increase. Additional raises are pending performance reviews.
Other business approved by Police Jury:
-       The reappointment of Greg Monier on the Mamou Fire Protection District #1 Board for another two-year term

Michelle Sonnier, Massage Therapist, spoke at Rotary Meeting

    The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from licensed massage therapist Michelle Sonnier.

   Sonnier is a graduate of Sacred Heart and LSU. Her office, Myohealth Massage Therapy is located in the Lemoine Brothers building. Massage therapy can help relieve neck and back pain and promote relaxation.

   Among the types of massages she offers include: Deep Tissue, Trigger Point Therapy, Sports Massage, Infant Massage, TMJ massage and body scrubs.

   Massage sessions can go from 30 minutes to 2 hours. She was the special guest of Rotarian Mable Forman.

    Rotarian Maggie Ortego reported that club members taught the “Choices” program to six classes of 9th graders at Ville Platte High last week.

    Club President Wayne Vidrine announced that he and other club members will be traveling to the Beaumont Rotary Club on January 3 to make a donation to help Beaumont families who had a loss in the flooding earlier this year.

    Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser will be visiting the Ville Platte Rotary and visiting Chicot State Park on January 9.

French Immersion Students entertain Evangeline School Board Members Wednesday

   The holiday spirit filled the air Wednesday as the Ville Platte Elementary French immersion students led the Evangeline Parish school board meeting with the pledge of allegiance recited in French, then treated those in attendance to a couple of French Christmas carols.

    Evangeline Parish School board members opened the floor for nominations for the election of new officers. The positions up for discussion were board President, board Vice-President and Executive Committee. It was decided that the positions would remain as is with board president Wayne Dardeau and Vice President Scott Limogis.

    Gratitude seemed to be the theme of the evening as board members heard from VPHS principal, Melanie Miller, who wanted to personally thank board members for approving their most recent project.

In other news:

— Two Evangeline Parish middle school students were recognized for their acceptance into the intermediate honors band. Sebastian, a saxophone player from Bayou Chicot Elementary, and Joshua, a flute player from Basile High School.
— EPYB & Lil’ Dribblers use of facilities approved.
— Mamou High School was approved for removal of tiles containing asbestos from four entrances to the M.H.S gym.
— Pine Prairie High School received bid approval for aluminum bleacher stadium system.
— Next meeting date is set for January 17, 201

Evangeline School District sponsors new Technology and Teacher Training Building

Grand Opening at School District Teacher Training Building
December 13, 2017


A large group of educators, public officials, family and friends attended the grand opening and ribbon cutting of the newly constructed Teacher Training and Technology Center tonight. Special Education Director Roxane West was the special emcee. The Mamou Elemenary French Immersion students did the pledge of allegiance in French as well as singing Christmas songs in French. Supt. Of Schools Darwan Lazard welcomed the large crowds that attended the meeting. Supervisors Linda Lafleur, Sherral Tezeno and Kelli Lafleur showed what some of their students were doing as far as technology is concerned. Assistant Supt. Of Schools Mike Lombas introduced all of the educators and officials who attended. KVPI FM 92.5 was there covering the event with a live remote.


Cleco makes donation to Ville Platte Boys and Girls Club at City Council Meeting

        On Tuesday, the Ville Platte City Council accepted a $5,000 donation from Cleco to the Ville Platte Girls-Boys Place. Mayor Jennifer Vidrine wants the public to know that this donation will go towards establishing a S.T.E.M (science, technology, engineering & math) program.

       The City Council also approved the purchasing of 17 city vehicles, and 5 police vehicles. Mayor Vidrine tells the community to keep an eye out for city workers in their red, Dodge trucks with the Ville Platte City Crest on the side, and for police patrolling in their new Chevy Tahoes. The new city vehicles will come equipped with real-time tracking capabilities.

In other business , the City Council:

  • Approved Evangeline Bank to handle financing of the 22 vehicles being purchased by the city.
  • Voted in favor of giving Fire Fighters 2% pay increase.
  • Appointed City Counciman Mike Perron  to be 2018 Mayor pro-temp.
  • Next meeting date is set for Wednesday, January 17, 2018.
  • Renewing the  sponsorship of the transportation program provided by Evangeline Council on Aging.
  • Voted to adopt the 3rd Supplemental Bond Ordinance for phase 3 and final phase  of the city's water project which will begin next year.

Evangeline Police Jury Conducts All French Meeting

      The Evangeline Parish Police Jury today (Tuesday) continued their long standing tradition of conducting their December meeting all in Cajun French. From all indications, it is the only meeting of its kind in Louisiana. Jury President Ryan Ardoin said the jury makes this effort to show their support for our parish’s rich Cajun French heritage. The jury meeting room was packed with a standing room crowd of visitors, family members and VIP’s. KVPI 1050 The Legend was there covering the entire meeting live for residents who could not attend in person.
      Police Juror Eric Soileau conducted the meeting. Clerk of Court Randy Deshotel led the group in the invocation. The French Immersion students from Mamou Elementary did the pledge of allegiance and sand Christmas songs all in French.
      Gilbert “Winky” Aucoin and his wife, Margaret “Chicken” Aucoin addressed the jury about the upcoming “Grand Hoorah” festival planned for April at Chicot State Park. Once again, this year, the festival will team up with the Dewey Balfa Folkroots camp and is scheduled for April 20-26.
        Cary Porche with Folk Roots said the last time, the event was held at Chicot Park, there were 103 people enrolled for the week long camp representing 26 states and 11 countries. He expects that the same number of people to be there next year..
        Also, Boisy Pitre of Prairie Rhonde was introduced who will be in charge of the traditional boucherie that will take place on Saturday April 21 during the festival.
       John Vidrine spoke to the audience. He is a member of the Hoorah Dewey Balfa Ramblers who entertained the crowds after the meeting ended.
       Becky Buller of Keep Evangeline Beautiful said parish residents are showing pride because she is seeing more clean areas than ever before. Her group is expected to introduce a new original song sung by local artist Kyle Veillon overt KVPI.
        In other news, the police jury:
--advertising to receive bids for the construction of a new Chataignier Library Branch building;
--reappointed Randy Fruge and Albert LeJeune to another two year term on the Acadia/Evangeline Fire Protection District Board;
--approved a request for a trail ride in the Mamou area on Bieber road;
--heard from Secretary Treasurer Donald Bergeron report that sales tax collections in November amounted to $293,307.


Chief Neal Lartigue reports suspect located.

On December 1, 2017 the Ville Platte Police Department requested information on the identity of a suspect that robbed someone at an ATM at a local bank on West Main Street.    Today Chief Neal Lartigue has issued an update to this investigation. 

Spencer Charles Williams, 29 of 707 Young Street, Ville Platte has turned himself in to the Warden at the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office and was transported and booked into the Ville Platte City Jail on the charge of simple robbery.. 

Chief Lartigue reports that in an interview with Detective Alex Dunn, Williams admitted to taking money from the victim while the victim was parked at the ATM. 

Chief Lartigue reminds residents to report any suspicious person or activity by contacting the Ville Platte Police Department at (337) 363-1313.  Your call will remain anonymous.

New State Police Troop I Commander on Let's Talk About It

Tune in Wednesday at 12:30 on Classic Hits 92.5 KVPI as we talk with Captain Wayne Vidrine, the new State Police Troop I Commander. Wayne and his family reside here in Ville Platte and he began his long law enforcement career with the Evangeline Parish Sheriff's Department.

Teachers of the Year spoke to Ville Platte Rotary Club

   The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from two of the three Evangeline Parish Teacher of the Year award winners.  Supt. of Schools Darwan Lazard told fellow club members that “we are blessed with great teachers in all of our schools.”

   Supervisor Grace Sibley introduced Heather Demoruelle, Elementary Teacher of the Year winner. Heather teaches First and Second graders at James Stephens Montessori School.  She is in her fourth year of instruction at the school. She explained her typical day is by engaging her students to help find out what they want to know and learn..

  High School Teacher of the Year winner Lacy Hamilton Soileau is a teacher at Ville Platte High School. Lacy makes her history and civics courses interesting by doing role playing and dressing in period costumes. She and some of her students did three skits including one on “Checks and Balances” and “Equal Protection Under the Law”.

    Middle School Teacher of the Year Yvette Jagneaux could not attend the meeting because of a family emergency.

    Rotary Club President Wayne Vidrine reminded members that the annual Christmas party is planned for next Tuesday Dec. 12 at 6:30pm at La Veille Banque. There will no noon club meeting next Tuesday due to the Christmas party.

   Club Member Maggie Ortego announced that rotary members will be teaching students in four classes at Ville Platte High this week the “Choices” program to encourage students to stay in school and not drop out.

   Lt. Governor Billy Nungessor will be attending the rotary club meeting January 9 to discuss Chicot State Park.

Pine Prairie Police arrest Robbery Suspect


Simple Robbery, Simple Battery and Theft under $1000

Walter L England

375 Ellis Street

Leesville, LA

D.O.B. 1-13-1981


On November 19, 2017 Pine Prairie Police received a complaint in reference to a simple robbery. Through Investigation, it was learned that Walter England age 36 of Leesville, La had pushed the female victim down and took her purse containing about $400 in cash and various other items before fleeing the area. An arrest warrant was issued and with the assistance of Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office, Walter England was arrested without incident on our warrant on charges of simple robbery, simple battery and theft under $1,000. During the booking process at Vernon Parish, England was in possession of illegal narcotics. He was booked in Vernon Parish on those charges and held on our warrant. He was transferred by Pine Prairie Police to the Evangeline Parish Jail on our warrant on November 29, 2017. He is being held at the Evangeline Parish Jail on a $15,000 bond and a detainer for Vernon Parish.


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