The Evangeline Parish Police Jury will hold public hearings and a special meeting Monday, December 29, to discuss several issues, including 2008 budget amendments and approval of its 2009 budget, but most notably the jury will hold a public hearing and make a decision regarding the Louisiana Legislature’s ACT 356, which provides for an increase in police juror pay statewide.
With a strong public interest in the pay raises, Police Jury President Bob Manuel said he has received mixed feedback. He said some people agree with the raise of $400 per month for police jurors because the last time police jurors received an increase was 1979. However, he said some people are against it, while some people never believe public officials should receive raises.
The state legislature approved the measure earlier this year and all the jury has to do is ratify it and make it official. Manuel said the jury’s budget can afford the raise. He also added all public officials receive raises from the state, sometimes very large raises, but the jury is one of the few that is required to bring it before the public, so jurors were expecting the interest and some of the negative feedback from the community.
The public hearing for the salary increase will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday, December 29. The jury’s special meeting, where it will take action on the issue, will follow at 6 p.m.
In addition to the salary increase, the jury also will be discussing its 2008 budget amendments and its proposed 2009 budget. The public hearing to discuss the budgets will be at 5 p.m.
Other items on the agenda include:
•Approve timber severance formula based on acreage.
•Reappoint Tiqua Manuel to the Mamou Fire Protection District Number One Board.
•Discuss part-time employment of Gayle Briley at Ville Platte Health Unit.
•Approve payroll for 911 office.
•Discuss the changing of several polling places.
•Reappoint Nathan Fontenot as a commissioner for Te Mamou Water District.
•Discuss request from city court to increase city judge’s salary.
•Discuss motion to hire Mike Arnold part-time with OEP contingent on availability of grant money.