LSN STAFF WRITER
CROWLEY – The directors of the Acadia Parish Tourist Commission voted last week to request authority from the Louisiana Bond Commission to sell $570,000 in bonds to facilitate the purchase of seven acres of land as the site of a proposed convention/conference center. The land is adjacent to the tourist office on Tower Road and being offered for sale by Sulphur Country LLC.
Commission officers are expected appear before the Bond Commission on Thursday.
Bonding Attorney Jason Akers, representing the firm of Foley and Judell, reported St. Martin Bank of Trust has offered to purchase the bond at a floating interest rate of 3.75 percent, with a floor of three percent and a ceiling of eight percent.
The repayment of the bonds will be scheduled in three years on April 1, 2012.
On a related matter, Secretary Paul Broussard reported Isabella de la Houssaye, former mayor of Crowley, has volunteered to serve as project coordinator for the proposed convention center. The commissioners authorized de la Houssaye to negotiate on the Commission’s behalf.
In other action, Andrew Gibson of GT Technical Solutions of Crowley, presented a progress report on the development of a new tourism website.
Gibson scheduled a live demonstration this week and indicated the website would be completed within two weeks.
The updated website with offer an interactive picture tour of Acadia Parish, information on parish hotels and motels, and feature the parish’s attractions, Cajun and Zydeco music and local artists.
In other business, the commissioners transferred $5,000 from the sale of a used van into the marketing budget to pay the Commission’s share of $2,500 to print 25,000 brochures for the Cajun-Zydeco Byway Association. Equal amounts will be shared and paid by the Evangeline Parish and St. Landry Parish Tourist Commissions.
Executive Director Gwen Hanks reported that invitations have been mailed out to parish officials and leaders to attend the dedication of a three flagpoles to the Hoffpauir Family which donated land on which the Tourist Center is located.
The dedication will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, May 8, and will provide a brunch to visiting dignitaries.
Hanks also reported she will represent the Commission at a travel expo May 15 and 16 in Tyler, Texas. She also plans to attend a meeting of the Southcentral Motor Coach Association in Mobile, Ala. in August.
Hanks also reported that Church Point’s Steve Carriere, the founder of the Woodstock Festival to benefit St. Jude Hospital in Memphis, Tenn., should be seated as the Commission’s newest member-at-large for a two-year term at the May meeting. His appointment is expected to be approved by the Acadia Parish Police Jury during April.
The Commission extended for one year the term of current member-at-large Fran Bihm.