The Monroe City Council will meet Tuesday, June 23, 6:00 PM, Monroe City Hall, 400 Lea Joyner Expressway.
Here is the agenda.
The plaintiff in the underlying case that has resulted in an apparent coverup by the judges of the Fourth Judicial (Ouachita, Morehouse Parishes) District Court, has filed a motion asking that all eleven judges in the district be prevented from hearing the case, according to the Ouachita Citizen’s Johnny Gunter.
The recusal motion, filed June 12 by Joe Ward of Covington, stated “this (Palowsky) litigation is heavily associated with, if not directly connected with, litigation filed by this Court in an effort to protect the alleged privacy rights of its long-time employee, (law clerk Allyson) Campbell. Indeed, by filing suit, all judges of this Court became ‘interested’ in this case.
“Given this fact, Palowsky respectfully, submits that the judges of this Court will not be able to rule in his litigation in a fair and impartial manner…”
After Gunter investigated and wrote about the Palowski suit, a public records request was made for documents pertaining to Campbell, and the judges sued the Citizen.
A judge earlier this month ruled the records sought by Gunter are protected by the employee’s “privacy interests.”
Like most all welfare recipients that have a well-developed sense of entitlement, today The (Monroe, LA) News Star – aka The Mayo Mouthpiece – is suffering an acute case of butthurt over not getting their “fair share” of milk from the taxpayer tit.
The Mouthpiece’s Executive Editor is unhappy that they weren’t selected as the “official journal” for the City of Monroe at last Tuesday’s council meeting. Throwing around charges of “racism,” the editor just can’t get over the concept that a duly elected legislative body should not be a rubber stamp for the executive.
See here the opinion piece.
In our very first posting six years ago tomorrow, we opined that the concept of an “official journal” for a governmental entity is nothing but welfare, and often leads to a cozy relationship between politicians and those who report on what they do, or do not do. Public notices can and should be posted on the internet, since there are many more people who own computers and surf the web, than subscribe to newspapers.
Another segment of the I-20 North Service Road will bid within days, and is scheduled for construction this fall, Denmon Engineering’s Mike Bonnett told the Interstate 20 Economic Development District’s Board of Directors last night. The board approved the proposed plan and schedule.
The road will run from Millhaven Road near its intersection with Garrett Road eastward to Fontana Road. Advertisement for bids will be next week, and will be due July 8, Bonnett said. Construction should begin late summer or early fall.
More portions of the service road are in the design and planning stage.
The Interstate 20 Economic Development Corporation Board of Directors will meet Thursday, June 4, 5:00 PM, Monroe City Hall, second floor.
Here is the agenda.
Chapter 24.5 of Monroe’s Code of Ordianances deals with the issue of nuisances and abatement, and is the legal authority for government to condemn or otherwise force upgrade of substandard property.
Last night, three such properties were on the agenda, and they were discussed with little controversy. In one of the instances, an extension to the normal thirty day deadline was granted to allow the property owner to bring the structure up to code.
However, at the end of the meeting, during public comments, property owner Michael Wade made his case of why he thought he was unfairly treated at the May 12 council meeting when his property was condemned.
Wade said that a letter from the city confirming the council’s decision did not list any code violations, and should be invalidated.
Said Wade, “On these, papers, they’re supposed to list the code violations. I got four pieces of paper from the city – not one code violation is listed.”
Wade went on to chastise Mayor Jamie Mayo, saying he supported him when he ran for mayor. “Mr. Mayor read this. We you needed me I was there. I need you now.”
Mayo told Wade to meet with him after the meeting.
In other business, the council heard from Daniel Howard, Chancellor of Louisiana State University of Alexandria (LSUA). He made the trip to thank the city for donation of several horse stalls from the city’s Equestrian Pavilion.
Howard said the the stalls would be utilized for the new Rodeo Team now being organized at LSUA.
Community Affairs Director John Ross said that the pavilion had not been used for some time, in response to a question by District Three’s Betty Blakes.
Monroe Chamber of Commerce President Sue Nicholson is one of the top 10 lobbyists in the state, ranked by expenditures, according to an analysis published in the 5/18/15 edition of The (New Orleans) Times Picayune. The expenditures are for the years 2010-2014.
Much of the organization’s revenues are paid by the City of Monroe and the University of Louisiana at Monroe.
See here the 2013-2014 audit, page 17:
During 2014 and 2013, the Chamber received $92,500 and $97,500, respectively (11% and 12%, respectively, of total support in each of these years) from the City of Monroe, and the University of Louisiana at Monroe. All of the funds received from these local entities was used to support the costs of the Chamber’s consulting lobbying firm.
See also the Chamber’s 2013 tax return.
The Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court that appointed Ad Hoc Judge Anne Simon to oversee a lawsuit filed by Fourth Judicial (Ouachita, Morehouse Parishes) District Judges against The Ouachita Citizen newspaper has had an extensive judicial and law enforcement career in the Monroe area.
Justice Marcus Clark last March 24 appointed Simon to oversee the case.
See Here the order.
Clark served as a judge in the 4th JD from 1997 to 2009, before his election to the state’s highest court. From 1985 to 1996 he was an assistant District Attorney, working part of the time for incumbent 4th JD District Attorney Jerry Jones.
From 1978 to 1982, he was a deputy in the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office (OPSO).
In 2004, Clark was disciplined by the Supreme Court for not deciding his cases in a timely manner.
The dispute began when Citizen reporter Johnny Gunter sought several documents concerning law clerk Allyson Campbell, in light of allegations that Campbell may have shredded court filings and delayed numerous writ applications. After being rebuffed for some of the the documents, Citizen Publisher Sam Hannah, Jr. filed a criminal complaint with DA Jones, demanding that he enforce the state’s public records law. The court retaliated against Hannah by suing the newspaper, claiming a privacy exception for the documents.