The Monroe City Council will meet Tuesday, October 28, 6:00 PM, Monroe City Hall, 500 Lea Joyner Expressway.
See here the agenda and meeting info packet.
The most newsworthy item at last night’s meeting of the Interstate 20 Economic Development District’s Board of Directors wasn’t on the agenda – an update on the request by Louisiana Delta Community College for $600 thousand.
A requested opinion from Louisiana’s Attorney General on the legality of such a donation was rejected because it wasn’t submitted by Board Chairman Otis Chisley. The letter had been written by attorney Louis Scott, per a motion made at the 9/11/14 meeting.
Chisley said he would be sending a letter shortly. “We’re going to redo the letter and send it back, so we can make a formal request to see what their opinion is about the donation of the $600 thousand,” Chisley said.
The possible expenditure will have to be reconciled on what may be a lack of sufficient money to fund the request, according to a 9/24/14 story by the Ouachita Citizen’s Zack Parker. Wrote Parker:
The Interstate 20 Economic Development Corp.’s governing board has pledged to spend more money on ongoing and future infrastructure and economic development projects than it has at its disposal.
Prior to entertaining Delta’s proposal, the I-20 board had voted to commit some $16.5 million toward 15 projects though the corporation only has $13.9 million in the bank, according to the I-20 board.
In other business, the board heard from Gene Tarver, representing Cooper Truck Center, a business located at 6800 Frontage Road. Tarver said that owner Larry Cooper owned land adjacent to his business that he wanted to develop, and was asking the board to fund sewer and water service for the property.
Demon Engineering’s Chris Patrick said that his preliminary estimate was that the sewer line would cost about $82 thousand, and the water line would run about $30 thousand.
It was said the property appears to be within Monroe’s corporate limits, within the boundary of the I-20 district, and the request fit the description of the district’s charge for economic development. Chisley said the group would take the request under advisement and make a decision shortly.
About 1 1/2 hours of the nearly two-hour meeting was spent in executive session, discussing negotiations for right-of-way acquisitions.
The Interstate 20 Economic Development District’s Board of Directors will meet today (Thursday, 10/2), 5:00 PM, Monroe City Hall, 400 Lea Joyner Expressway, second floor mayor’s conference room.
Here is the notice.
We’ve not received an agenda yet.
Employees, both past and present, of Monroe Transit said at last night’s meeting of the Monroe City Council that Mayor Jamie Mayo “slandered” them with his baseless accusations of equipment sabotage by employees. It makes no sense, they said, for employees to damage the very equipment that helps produce their livelihood.
Said Damian Armstrong, a 20-year employee and President of Local 1160 of the Amalgamated Transit Union, “This is the craziest thing I’ve ever heard in my life, about sabotage. I’ve been there this month make 20 years. I’m not going to jeopardize my livelihood, and no one else at Transit, their livelihood because of so-called sabotage. There’s only three people, I think, in the City of Monroe who actually believe this – that’s the Mayor, Mr. Janaway (Public Works Director), and Mark Keenan (Monroe Transit Manager). I’ve talked to a lot people – passengers, friends – no one believes this. They actually think it’s funny.”
Delores Brown, a Transit operator, said much the same thing.
Said Brown, “For the last few weeks, I’ve been hearing about sabotage with Monroe Transit. I have been with Monroe Transit for over thirty something years. No sabotage until now. All I ask is for you all (the council) please start coming and looking for yourselves, instead of taking someone else’s word for it.”
Said Deotis Pruitt, a Transit retiree, “We have too many relatives working over there in Transit. There’s creating positions – we have a street supervisor, we have a regular supervisor, and a general manager. Now we have an assistant general manager, some assistant to the assistant general manager. Where’s the money coming from?”
The remarks from transit employees came near the end of the two hour meeting, after Mayo had left the meeting room.
In other business, the council approved liability insurance coverage for the transit system. The contract that was approved was changed from what appeared on the agenda, in favor of a more expensive policy with no deductible and better coverage.
The Monroe City Council will meet Tuesday, September 23, 6:00 PM, Monroe City Hall, 400 Lea Joyner Expressway.
Here is the agenda and meeting information.
Donation of $600 thousand of Interstate 20 Economic Development District Corporation funds for Delta Community College was tabled at last Thursday’s meeting until an opinion can be rendered by Louisiana’s Attorney General. The I-20 funds would serve as a match to augment other capital outlay monies financed by bond sales, and would pay for capital improvements at the facility.
According to Act 360, the enabling legislation, the matching funds are to be private money. As the funds that the I-20 board dispenses are derived from sales taxes, it is unclear how they would qualify for the match.
In his motion to table the issue, board member Johnny Bryant the board needed to know that the action was legal.
Said Bryant, “One recommendation I would make is that we ask our legal council Mr. Scott to submit that request to the attorney general for an opinion. And if it is legal, we need to also see if whether we have the funds to do that.”
Bryant’s motion passed unanimously.
In other business, the board heard a report from S. E. Huey’s Charles Taylor on their drainage study along the I-20 corridor within the district.
Taylor said the field word had been done, and he showed the board some preliminary aerial photos with the existing drainage structures noted. He said by the next meeting, a report with recommendations would be presented.
Taylor added that as the area developed, and more paving was done in the area, it was likely that additional drainage structures would have to be built.
Also, the board approved some change orders on the design work for the I-20 service road.
The Interstate 20 Economic Development Corporation Board will meet Thursday, September 11, 4:00 PM, Monroe City Hall, 400 Lea Joyner Expressway, Mayor’s conference room, second floor.
Here is the agenda.