Mayor Randy Roach will be steppin down next year after 16 years as mayor of Lake Charles. Everyone in our city, area and state agrees he’s done a fantastic job. Between hurricanes, man camps an a bunch of politically minded council members, Randy has managed to turn Lake Charles into de crown jewel uf de Gulf Coast. Never one to boast, Randy haz just tugged along, reviewin every proposal to make shore it wuz de best ting for de city uf Lake Charles. Now we gonna see a dog fight to see who will replace him az mayor. So far, we have three announced candidates. Calcasieu Parish Police Jury president Chris Landry haz announced he’s runnin. So iz City Councilmen Dana Jackson. An recently in de paper, we sawed where Joe Banks, pastor at Living Word Christian Center, haz announced he will be runnin. Landry haz 17 years uf public service az a City Council member an police juror. Jackson haz served az a police juror an iz now a City Council member. One haz to remember dat when A.B. Franklin beat Wilfred Carter dat Carter reminded folks dar would be udder races, includin a mayor’s race. He didn’t say den he wuz runnin, but we would be willin to bet he jumps in. Udder names mentioned include John Cardone, Elijah Guillory, Mike Clark, Marshall Simien and Nick Hunter. De first primary will be March 17. Follow dis race, folks. Dar’ll be lots uf fireworks before dis one iz over.
Whatcha Gonna Do When Day Come For You?
In recent weeks, we’ve seen de result of de hard work of city, parish and state police in solvin crimes. Today, DNA technology helps a great deal. De many types of electronic gear make it a lot harder for criminals to get away. De first case about which we’re talkin iz de killin uf two Southern University co-eds a few weeks ago. De two were very popular kids dat had a very bright future ahead. One of de girls, Lashuntae Benton, wuz from Lake Charles. De senseless killin of dese two girls happened at a party off de Baton Rouge campus. At press time, two arrests have been made in de case. Again, good police work lead dem to de thugs who were at de party. De other is de case of de donut shop owner who was brutally murdered in 1998. De Born case was recently featured as a cold case in dis publication and on KPLC. Eighteen years after de crime, Dennis Bartie of Lake Charles confessed. Chief Dixon sed Born had been stabbed about 30 times. Again, high tech DNA matched Bartie’s skin under de nails of Born. Good police work and cooperation among departments made this happen. To dose who are still waitin for answers about de killin uf dar loved ones, all we gotta say is look at de Born case and don’t ever give up.
Bob Will Be Missed
Bob Hebert, de former president uf McNeese, passed away recently while on vacation in Italy. Southwest Louisiana remembers him as a leader who did a whole lot to make McNeese and Lake Charles much bigger on the map. Dis legislative brew ha ha goin on now would have been a piece uf cake for Hebert. He would have walked away wit mo money dan Tech, UL-M, an udder schools. His work to bring McNeese back an get it runnin afta Rita iz still talked about in coffee shops trewout Southwest Louisiana. Me, I always enjoyed sharing a joke or two wit him. Bob Hebert … he will be missed.
It’s Gonna Be Huge For SWLA
I guess we’ve gotten used to announcements uf billion-dollar, an in some case, multi-billion dollar projects in our area. But a recent announcement uf a non-gas project uf $400-plus million got de attention uf lots uf folks. De project iz known az Imperial Pointe, an will include medical offices, housin an de area’s first medical school. Now, phase one uf de Nelson Road project iz already complete, and developers are movin on at a fas pace. De project iz estimated to mean $19 million a year to de local economy. We tink dis iz jus an example uf what iz to come in de way uf medical schools in our area. LSU-Shreveport haz quickly become recognized for dar work in North Louisiana, an wit it haz come a constant parade uf students from Lafayette, Lake Charles, Baton Rouge and Hammond. Watch for mo teachin type medical facilities in our area. As for Imperial Pointe, Dr. John Noble iz project leader. So, if you know Dr. John, you know Imperial Pointe will be a success.
What About De Top?
Our governor John John Edwards haz called de second special session uf his short time in office to figger out how to raise money to fix de deficit uf $600 million. In hiz call for de special session, which started 30 minutes afta de 85-day regular session ended, Edwards didn’t ax dem to consider any expense cuts — only gettin mo money from de po folks uf de great state uf Louisiana. It should be noted dat dar are no cuts to de administration. Oh, but de Legislature wouldn’t hear uf dat. An de pay uf guys like Jay Dardenne, who gets 235 grand a year, just sticks out an gives taxpayers de choo rouge. My stockbroker fran Max sez cuttin should start at de top — meanin John John should cut hiz pay. But we have heard nuttin uf dat an probably won’t.
It Ain’t Gonna Make No Difference
In de middle uf all dis mess about money in Baton Rouge, dar iz talk about a constitutional convention. Haven’t had one uf dem since 1972. Dat one wuz gonna be a fix-all. But when dat New Awlins bunch finished wit it, it wuz worse dan ever. Now de New Awlins bunch don’t have de power it once had. But dat North Shore bunch shore haz power now. What we are sayin iz, we gonna see mo uf de same constitutional convention?
Race Will Be Real Dog Fight
Public Service Commission member Foster Campbell haz entered de race for de U.S. Senate seat David Vitter sez he ain’t runnin for again. Campbell haz de endorsement uf Gov. John John, and dat should mean sometin among de Democrats. Now mos states have a Democratic and Republican primary, an den you have a general election. Not in our state. Everybody runs, and if no one gets 50 percent, den de top two vote getters go into a run-off. Wit dat sed, accordin to a poll taken by Southern Media and Opinion Research, Treasury Sec. John Kennedy iz showin 32 percent, followed by our congressman Charles Boustany with 10 percent; Campbell, who iz a Democrat, iz at 9 percent and congressman John Fleming uf North Louisiana at 5 percent. Retired Air Force Col. Rob Maness and Caroline Fayard each had 4 percent. Fayard, who iz a Democrat, had to expect opposition from her own party, an it came in de way uf Campbell. Needless to say, dem poll numbers are gonna change a lot between now an election time next year. Fayard comes from a wealthy New Awlins family dat’s used to givin big money to Dems. Guess she will be playin de “payback card” wit dem dat she haz helped. Campbell will be remembered as de guy who punched out a lobbyist at de state Capitol. He also rode hiz horse in hiz TV commercials when he ran for governor, when he didn’t do too well. In fact, many thought he had ridden into de sunset with dat one. But he’s baaaaaaack.
College Presidents Have A Solution. Kinda.
For years, college tuition in dis state could only be raised by de Legislature. Presidents uf colleges in our state have been yellin for dat authority, especially since now day get so little uf dar fundin from de state. Well, a bill wuz passed in de las session takin de matter to a vote uf de people. If dis passes, our state’s schools will have a little mo “movin room,” but will still need dem ridiculous fees.
Deep Taughts While Watchin De Tigers
10) What does John John really expect to do in dis special session?
9) What’s gonna happen in de battle between John John an A.G. Jeff Landry?
8) What will enrollment be like at LSU an Southern in de marijuana growin classes?
7) Where iz dat homegrown sweet corn T-Claude promised me?
6) Ain’t it great de Astros are finally winnin?
5) Who stole dem gorgeous Creole tomatoes from my garden?
4) Why not have Downtown at Sundown for eight weeks?
3) What kinda vote iz de Cajun John Wayne, Clay Higgins, gonna make?
2) Who iz de Democratic Party uf Louisiana gonna put in dat 3rd District congressional race?
1) Ain’t it great de Lake Area haz so many players in de college baseball playoffs?
I asked my fran Lefty if he wuz gonna buy New England Patriots’ Tom Brady’s cookbook for $200. Lefty sed he would when Brady buys his coon skinnin book for $25. Lefty sez de title uf hiz book is De Art uf De Skinnin. ‘Til next time, lache pas la patate.