Ascension Parish Receives $17.5 Million for Water Infrastructure

Ascension Parish President Kenny Matassa announced today that the Parish has received $17.5 million in USDA rural development funding for improvements to Parish Utilities of Ascension (PUA), serving the city of Donaldsonville, and ACUD #1, serving the unincorporated areas of West Ascension. “I made a commitment to provide the people of Donaldsonville with the high […]

Taking a bite out of ABA’s Elephant: Part VII (appointed manager or dictator?)

The Home Rule Charter Revision Committee was created by Ascension Council’s February 15 resolution which set a deadline of May 31.  That deadline was extended indefinitely but retained as the last opportunity to recommend amendments to the Council in time for placing any amendment on the ballot this year.  The worst kept secret in local […]

Taking a bite out of the ABA Elephant: Part III (hiring/firing a parish manager)

With A Better Ascension scheduled to take center stage at tonight’s Home Rule Charter Revision Committee meeting we continue to take a bite out of the ABA elephant. NOTE: For comparison’s sake ABA’s proposal will appear in red text.  Where corresponding language to ABA’s proposal exists in Ascension’s current Home Rule Charter exists, it will be included in italics. Paragraphs A […]

Petitt versus Lawler (and Dawson) II: The ABA “subterfuge”

After a brief dormancy it was nice to see Councilman Aaron Lawler reengage in an important discourse when it became apparent that a committee to consider mere revisions to Ascension’s charter was something altogether different.  Created by Council resolution on February 15, the Home Rule Charter Revision Committee is a ruse to backdoor A Better […]

The (old/new) Poster Boy for Planning Commission abolition: Ascension Sheriff called Dumas out in 2006

There was a time, not so long ago, when Ascension’s Planning Commission exercised its own judgment, unrestrained by political considerations and the preference of its master, the Parish Council.  On December 19, 2011 a semi-lame duck Council (four councilmen had been voted out two months earlier) abolished the nine-man commission, intending to reduce its membership […]

Speaking of Utilities boondoggles…AWT/William Daniel and $306,200 of taxpayer money

BOONDOGGLE- a wasteful or impractical project or activity often involving graft (Merriam Webster) If you thought Ascension’s purchase of Peoples Water Company on the parish’s west bank was a boondoggle, you ain’t seen nothing yet.  While the dilapidated water system cost $5.9 million to acquire, at least the parish acquired it (what price would the system fetch on […]

Jamestown Crossing deferred; once denied Oak Grove Townhouses approved by Planning Commission

Jamestown Crossing’s two preliminary plats were deferred from tonight’s Planning Commission meeting by the developer, Dantin Bruce Development, which opted for April’s agenda.  In a letter to Planning Director Jerome Fournier the developer wrote: “Dantin Bruce Development, LLC, which is the applicant for two separate preliminary subdivision plat applications that are scheduled to be presented […]

Pettit versus Lawler: Citizen fires salvo at Councilman

Yesterday morning I received two phone calls from Councilman Aaron Lawler, a charming conversationalist and all-around comical guy.  It was a continuation of our social media tete-a-tete from the previous day when Lawler declared: I have decided that I will not appoint a proxy to represent the people of Prairieville in District 7 on the charter committee. […]

From June 25, 2015: Donaldsonville Council was interested in purchasing Peoples Water

June 25, 2015 by Michael Tortorich The Donaldsonville City Council voted to authorize the Mayor to open a discussion about possibly negotiating a deal with the local water service company. After discussing the matter during the last Committee of the Whole meeting, Councilmen moved forward Tuesday night with approving of Mayor Leroy Sullivan to communicate […]

Gonzales Soccer Club contract “a back-room deal?” Turf war brewing over Recreation

The problem with whirlwind romances, aside from annoying everyone not part of the courtship, is that they tend not to last (we have no scientific data to support the conclusion).  In October Ascension’s Council Recreation Committee gushed all over newly-appointed director, BJ Romano, who hit the ground running after his September appointment by President Kenny […]