Archive for the ‘City of Ruston’ Category

Cameron Mays Assigned Counsel in Hashaway Case

04/15/2014
Dr. Sue Hashaway

Dr. Sue Hashaway

Cameron Mays, the accused murderer of retired Grambling State University (GSU) professor Dr. Sue Hashway was assigned an “indigent defender” counsel this morning in Third Judicial (Lincoln, Union Parishes) District Court, Judge Wayne Smith presiding.

Assigned was Farmerville attorney Deanna McCallum, who is the wife of another judge in the 3rd JD, Jay McCallum. According to courtroom sources, Deanna had previously contracted with the Public Defender Board.

Hashaway was killed nearly two years ago, in June 2012, in the normally quiet Cypress Springs neighborhood of Ruston, in what appeared to be a home invasion and robbery.

Several days after the crime, the Ruston Police Department (RPD) arrested Cameron Mays, 26, of Ruston and charged him with Hashaway’s murder. He was also charged in another home invasion and rape that occurred in the same neighborhood.

Several months later, four others were indicted and charged with being an accessory, among other charges.

Mays had originally retained Shreveport attorney Joseph Clark, who passed away “within the past 60 days,” according to Judge Smith. Several hearings on the case had been postponed during Clark’s illness.

Smith ordered a May 13, 2014 sanity hearing for Mays.

Ruston Infrastructure Projects Upcoming

04/08/2014

Several infrastructure projects were addressed at last night’s meeting of Ruston’s Board of Aldermen.

One of the more significant projects is a $1.6 million project that was awarded to West Monroe contractor Amethyst Construction for the Goodwin Road/Reynolds Drive intersection. The project will see street realignment work and construction of turn lanes at the intersection.

Another project that was authorized for $124 thousand of engineering services is the intersection of Farmerville Street and East Georgia Avenue, next to Woods Marine.

The project will widen Farmerville at the intersection, and install an island in the center of the street that will allow only right turns from Farmerville eastbound onto Georgia.

The airport obstruction clearing project that we had reported on earlier has a property acquisition cost of about $525 thousand, City Administrator Ed Pittman said. Federal and state grants of about $686 thousand will fund the project, with the leftover money to be applied to clearing of the obstructions.

Several drainage projects are set for study: French Quarter subdivision, Creekwood Subdivision, and Savannah Trace.

District Two Alderman Elmore Mayfield reminded the other board members that Districts One and Two had drainage “concerns that needed improvement.”

Light & Power Manager Darrell Caraway brought good news. The five-year contract for wholesale power is about to run out, and he said the city is looking at the possibility of a ten-year agreement with lower rates.

The city pays about 5 cents/kilowatt-hour under the old contract, and the new contract may see a rate closer to 4 cents/kilowatt-hour, Caraway said.

Ruston City Council Monday

04/06/2014

Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet Monday, April 7, 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, first floor courtroom.

Here is the agenda.

Among the significant items for discussion:

Expropriation of property near the Ruston Airport in order to complete obstruction removal project.

See here the resolution.

Rezoning of property along Trenton Street from South Chautauqua to the Community Trust Bank.

See here the memo.

Code enforcement actions.

Here is the memo.

Hollingsworth to Retire

03/04/2014

hollingsworth

Ruston Zoning Code Changes Adopted

03/04/2014

Apparently, all of the points of contention regarding the changes to Ruston’s Zoning Code were resolved in Zoning Board meetings, because no one spoke at a public hearing last night on the ordinance prior to its unanimous adoption by the city’s Board of Aldermen.

Mayor Dan Hollingsworth said as much in comments after the vote.

Said Hollingsworth, “Whether you’re a business owner, or a landowner, or a developer, or whoever you may be, we appreciate your input.” He added, “It’s a complicated process. It takes patience, and a lot of time and work and effort, and we appreciate you taking that time to explain your concerns about these ordinances as they come up.”

Prior to the vote, Consultant Kenneth Tipton, Jr. explained the several changes that were made after the original ordinance was introduced. Those changes are outlined in this memo.

In other business, the council approved a cooperative endeavor agreement between the city and the Ruston-Lincoln Chamber of Commerce in regards to the upcoming Louisiana Peach Festival 2014.

In exchange for producing and promoting the event, the city has historically allowed use of city property, provided public works clean-up, and provided police manpower for the parades and downtown events.

Ruston City Council Monday

03/02/2014

Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet Monday, March 3, 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, first floor courtroom.

Here is the agenda.

Set for public hearing and final vote are changes to the city’s zoning code, which has been the subject of several recent zoning board meetings and hearings. See here pertinent documents and maps.

Memo
Map – Core Edge 2014
Map – Zoning Changes 2014
Proposed Zoning Code Updates

Also, the council will consider action on substandard structures.

Here is the memo.

Jefferson Corner Open for Business Today

02/14/2014
Jefferson Corner, Friday, February 14, 2014

Jefferson Corner, Friday, February 14, 2014

Jefferson Corner, home of North Central Louisiana’s premier morning “coffee group,” is once again open for business. The convenience store/restaurant had been closed since the first of the year for remodeling.

Manager Robert Morse was on hand this morning, with hot coffee to greet returning customers.

Morse said it would be several weeks before hot meals would be served, pending arrival of kitchen equipment. Meanwhile, the store has snack foods, coffee, and fountain soft drinks available.

Many of the group’s regulars were present this morning. Seen were retired Lincoln Parish Tax Assessor Jewett Farley, Tommy Boddie, Richard “Lizard” Howard, and David Carnal, among others.

Keith Huffman said of the group, “This is one of the groups that if they can’t impress you with their intelligence, they’ll baffle you with BS.”

Police Juror Bobby Bennett, another regular, denied the oft-leveled accusation that the group is composed of liars.

Exclaimed Bennett, “We don’t lie!” He added “Now we might add to and take away a little bit, but that ain’t really lying.”

See also the Prunepicker Blog for pictures from this morning.

Jefferson Corner opens on Valentine Day. Today.

Entergy Power Outages

02/12/2014

Here is a handy interactive map of Entergy power outages, with forecasts of repair timetables.

Outage Map

Lincoln Parish Update – Roads, Etc.

02/12/2014

Good morning. Lincoln Parish is still under a Winter Storm Warning, with possible additional sleet, ice or snow. Roads are hazardous with multiple motor vehicle accidents, mostly on I-20. Please keep my office updated as to any additional closures of government offices, roads, bridges, power outages, etc. so that I can send in situational reports to the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP). See the list below with highlighted changes as of 0700 hours this morning, including some additional information for protective measures.

School Closures

1. All Lincoln Parish Public Schools closed for Tuesday and Wednesday.
2. Bethel Christian School & Montessori School closed Tuesday & Wednesday
3. Cedar Creek School closed Wednesday.
4. La. Tech University closed until noon Wednesday, opening pending afterwards.
5. Grambling State Universities closed until 1 pm on Wednesday, opening pending afterwards.
6. A.E. Phillips school closed Tuesday and Wednesday
7. All Grambling Lab Schools closed Tuesday and Wednesday

Government Office Closures

1. District Judge’s Office, closed Wednesday
2. District Attorney’s Office, closed Wednesday
3. Clerk of Court’s Office, closed Wednesday
4. Tax Assessor’s Office, closed Wednesday
5. Registrar of Voters Office, closed Wednesday
6. City of Ruston Offices closed, essential personnel on duty
7. Police Jury Office closed, essential personnel on duty

Road/Bridge Closures or Power Outages as of 0700 hours.

1. Bonner St., Farmerville St. and Everett St. railroad overpasses closed.
2. I-20 glazed over, multiple motor vehicle accidents.
3. LA. DOTD salting bridges and roadway to free up I-20
4. Rural roads & bridges glazed over
5. Scattered power outages, Entergy, Claiborne, & City of Ruston.

Additional Information

1. No Parish Declaration of Emergency at this time.
2. Trinity Methodist Church contacted and are on standby as a warming shelter.
3. If someone needs a place for shelter, please contact my office for additional information.
4. Entergy is staging crews and monitoring the situation
5. La. DOTD is staging their personnel on twelve hour shifts and monitoring the situation.
6. 2-1-1 is on standby as an additional information resource or call center.

If you have additional information to be reported, please contact my office. Thanks and be safe.

Kip Franklin, Director
Lincoln Parish Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness
100 West Texas Ave., P.O. Box 979
Ruston, La. 71273
Office phone – 318-513-6200
Cell phone – 318-607-8311
Fax number – 318-513-6209
Email: kfranklin@lincolnparish.org

Planning for Reynolds Drive Turn Lane Underway

02/04/2014

Plans for alleviating one of Ruston’s more congested intersections – Reynolds Drive and US 167 – moved closer to fruition at last night’s meeting of the Ruston City Council. The council approved a resolution permitting acquisition of property necessary to construct the turn lanes.

As planned, northbound traffic on North Vienna (US 167) would be provided a third lane in front of Captain D’s Restaurant that would allow a right turn out of the traffic flow.

Also, Reynolds Drive would be widened by the addition of a right-turn lane adjacent to Wendy’s Restaurant. That lane would permit westbound Reynolds traffic to turn right onto northbound Trenton Street out of the traffic flow. Trenton would be widened with the addition of a northbound merge lane for the Reynolds traffic.

Most of the money for the project is provided by a state grant, with the city paying for engineering and property acquisition costs.

In other business, the council approved participation of Stowe Woodward in the Louisiana Quality Jobs Program. The company is planning an expansion that would add about ten new jobs.


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