Archive for June, 2022

Northern Louisiana Medical Center Plans to Relocate to North Ruston


Northern Louisiana Medical Center has plans to relocate within the next few years on about 30 acres in the Celebrity Drive/Commerce Street area of Ruston, according to the Chief Executive Officer of Allegiance Health Management Services, the company that owns the hospital.

Allegiance CEO Rock Bordelon said Ruston needs a new facility, as the current building was first built in the early 60s.

“We already have land we’ve identified and we’re working on purchasing it toward that end,” he said. “It’s our goal, in the next four to five years, to build a brand new replacement hospital. We’re going to be buying roughly 36 acres of property to be able to accommodate the new hospital and two new medical office buildings that would be attached to the hospital,” he added.

Allegiance Executive VP Scott Prouty also spoke about the plans for a new facility.

“We’re talking about a $100 million project for your community. Our goal is to build a new hospital in this town. We’re negotiating a land deal somewhere around Celebrity and Commerce – in that area,” he said.

Asked about the current building located on East Vaughn Avenue, Prouty said that they would like to keep some health care facilities there. He added that some of the property might be donated to the city or the parish, or to Louisiana Tech.

Prouty noted that the original construction was in 1962, and some of it was not up to code.

The revelation came during discussion of an ordinance that would empower the jury to assist Allegiance in securing federal matching funds to be distributed among rural hospitals in Louisiana. Bordelon said about $900 million in total funds would be distributed, of which the Ruston facility could receive about $2 1/2 million/yr.

The jury and the Lincoln Parish Sheriff’s Office would each get about 5% for acting as the collection agents, Bordelon said.

The jury approved the ordinance with nine votes for and two nays (Cranford, Straughter) and one abstention (Scriber).

The jury’s Personnel and Benefits Committee tabled the appointment of a member to the parish’s library board until the next meeting, saying that some citizens had expressed an interest in serving on the board, but had not yet applied.

The library’s Board of Control had recommended that present board member Augusta Clark be reappointed. That vote was 5 votes for, with four abstentions.


Police Jury Meets Tuesday


The Lincoln Parish Parish Police Jury will meet Tuesday, June 14, Jack Beard Room of the Lincoln Parish Library, 910 North Trenton. The agendas and meeting times are:

Parks, Recreation & Tourism – 5:15 PM

Health & Welfare Committee – 5:30 PM

Public Works Committee – 6:00 PM

Personnel & Benefits Committee – 6:30 PM

Police Jury – 7:00 PM

Wiley won’t seek Re-election for School Board


Lincoln Parish School Board member Susan Wiley said she won’t be standing for re-election this fall, she told fellow members at last night’s meeting of the board.

“After much thought and prayer, I have decided not to seek re-election,” she said. “When I first ran for office in 2014, my daughter was an 8th grader at Ruston Junior High School. My desire was to provide parental insight on our school board, and God has allowed me to do that,” she added. “I’m still dedicated and passionate about education and will continue to help students to identify career pathways that will lead to sustainable wages and success.”

Wiley represents District 1, which takes in part of Grambling and the Mt. Olive community north of Interstate 20.

Business Manager Juanita Duke reported on the proposed salary schedules for the school year beginning 7/1/2022.

One significant change is re-allocation of part of the May salary supplements (14th check) to base salary.

Duke said that the May, 2023 supplement will be decreased by $1200 for certified employees and $600 for non-certified, and that money will be included in the employee’s base salary.

Said Duke, “$6,464 that was disbursed to certified teachers in May will be reduced by that $1200, so there will still be a sizeable distribution in that 14th check. The 13th check that’s paid in November will remain the same.”

The board approved the recommendation unanimously.

See here the complete salary schedule.

Duke also presented the board with an amended budget to reflect changes that have occurred in revenues and expenditures. It was adopted unanimously.

Doris Lewis reported on personnel changes for the month.

Siegmund to Run for Re-election


Incumbent City of Ruston Ward 5 Aldermen Bruce Siegmund will seek another term in this fall’s election, according a press release he made public at last night’s council meeting.

Siegmund was first elected in 2014, and ran unopposed in 2018.

Ward 5’s area is mostly west of Tech Drive and north of California Avenue.

An ordinance was introduced that will set the city’s property tax rates for tax year 2022. Two taxes are included – 5.19 mils for general alimony, and 2.89 mils for recreation operation and maintenance. At the next council meeting, a public hearing will be held, and a vote for final approval.

See here the proposed ordinance.

Public Works Director John Freeman told the board that three capital outlay project funding requests from the state had been approved – $325 thousand for the Ruston Skate Park, $400 thousand for city hall renovations, and $300 thousand for the industrial park.

Said Freeman, “Last year we did make some requests for capital outlay funding, and we were the three items.”

Mayor Ronny Walker said, “Upstairs in the old City Court, we’re totally redoing that for offices. We’re doing some renovations in the civic center, and also replacing some ceiling tiles in hallways, and some long overdue maintenance.”

School Board Meets Tomorrow


The Lincoln Parish School Board will meet Tuesday, June 7, 6:00 PM, Central Office, 410 South Farmerville Street.

Here is the agenda.

Ruston City Council Monday


Ruston’s Board of Aldermen will meet Monday, June 6, 5:30 PM, Ruston City Hall, 401 North Trenton.

Here is the agenda.