St. Landry Parish Council

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Debbie LaGrange, of Arnaudville, speaks the St. Landry Parish Council at a special meeting Wednesday in Opelousas. LaGrange threw a white cloth in the air as she criticized council members over a plan to turn the vacant St. Luke Hospital into a French Immersion Campus. “I wave the white flag of surrender. Eight years of this lunacy is enough,” she said. (Photo by Harlan Kirgan)

Arnaudville residents fear AG opinion will lead to delay in hospital action

A request for an Attorney General’s opinion on the use of money from the district governing St. Luke Hospital raised fears among some Arnaudville residents that it was a tactic to delay an agreement to disband the district.
The item was on a special meeting of the St. Landry Parish Council on Wednesday.
On a 7-6 vote on Jan. 18 council approved an agreement with the St. Martin Parish Council to dissolve the First Hospital District of the Parishes of St. Landry and St. Martin.

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Parish on track to cut 17 employees

St. Landry Parish Government is on track to cut 17 jobs as part of a plan to bring spending in line with revenue.
Parish President Bill Fontenot said nine people were off the payroll as of Wednesday’s Administrative-Finance Committee meeting.
Another six jobs will be eliminated within seven days, he said.
Some of the employees were eligible for retirement and others have leave time, which had to be cleared from the books, he said.
The staff reduction is part of plan to deal with an operating deficit, which was projected to be about $700,000 at the end of 2016.

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Amanda Cain, a certified public accountant, has been hired by St. Landry Parish Government. (Photo by Harlan Kirgan)

Former LSUE accountant hired to help parish finances

A former accountant at LSUE, Amanda Cain, has been hired to guide St. Landry Parish Government through a fiscal crisis. 
Cain’s hiring was announced Wednesday by Parish President Bill Fontenot at an Administrative-Finance Committee meeting. 
“Our budget should be more current and easier to manage,” Fontenot said. 
The parish government is ending the year with a deficit of about $700,000. Up to 17 parish workers face losing their jobs. 
The 2016 ending balance is budgeted at $1,114,973 in the General Fund. 

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St. Landry Parish Sheriff Bobby Guidroz speaks at the St. Landry Parish Council meeting on Nov. 22. (Photo by Harlan Kirgan)

Sheriff offers help to Parish Council

Facing a $670,000 deficit for its fiscal year that ends in December, the St. Landry Parish Council examined expenses at a special meeting and decided to meet again this Tuesday.
The meeting may result in the Parish Council approving an amended 2016 budget, which can be used for the next nine months if that is needed.
Charles Going, an Opelousas CPA assisting with the budget preparation cautioned that parish government should not delay budget cuts.
Those cuts include laying off 17 employees, including 11 in the Road and Bridge Department.

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