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EVANGELINE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD MEETING Wednesday, September 19, 2018 The Evangeline Parish School Board at their meeting Wednesday adopted changes to the Pupil Progression Plan for the 2018-2019 school year. Under the old plan, students needed a minimum of 800 points per nine-weeks period, per subject in each course. A minimum of 800 possible points, of which 400 points must come from 100 point summative test. In the new plan, students need a minimum of 600 points per nine-weeks period, per subject in each course. A minimum of 600 possible point, of which 400 points must come from 100 point summative test and 2 of which must be writing assignments or task using the state’s rubric. During the meeting, Mamou High School, W.W. Stewart, and Mamou Elementary were recognized for improvement in growth to mastery score for students with disabilities. Mamou High increased by 5.8 points. W.W. Stewart increased by 4.2 points. Mamou Elementary increased by 33.6 points. Ville Platte High School, Mamou High School, and Basile High School received ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) certificates for military exams for juniors and seniors. Pine Prairie will receive a certificate on October 24th. Superintendent Darwin Lazard said projects at Basile High School and W.W. Stewart are coming to an end, and work is progressing at Mamou High School. He also announced that there will be a Trail Blazer workshop in Baton Rouge Monday, Oct. 8th in Baton, sponsored by the Louisiana School Board Association. Also, the School Board got good news about their sales tax revenues , CFO Amy LaFleur said of the taxes coming in, “We’re off to a very good start this year.� She said they are ahead by $57,533.02 over the same time last year. In other business: • The board approved funds for the program My Virtual Reaching Coach to be used district wide. • The board approved renewal of the general liability insurance, automobile liability and physical damage insurance, and cyber liability insurance; • State contract for $14,125 for touch screen chromebooks and chrome cart for Evangeline Central • $31,668.80 for English and Language Arts curriculum for kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grades for Ville Platte Elementary • $10,060.30 for school supply stock ; • Approved payment for improvements to Basile High School • Approved payment for athletic track resurfacing at Basile High School

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The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from new Mercy Regional Medical Center CEO Calvin Green. Green was former administrator at a medical facility in Many and has been a hospital administrator for 35 years. The new company that purchased the hospitals in Ville Platte and Eunice from Lifepoint is Allegiance Health based in Shreveport. The two owners are former residents of Oakdale and Avoyelles Parish and own 10 rural hospitals throughout Louisiana. The medical group also owns medical facilities in Many, Arcadia, Lessville nd Winnfield. Green said he is impressed with the staff at Mercy Regional in Ville Platte. His primary goal is to keep four groups of people happy and content: patients and their families, the 350- employees of the hospital, the physicians and medical staff and the community at large. He is proud to announce that a physician will be locating here soon: Dr. Ellis Landreneau, a pediatrician who will move back home and open his practice in October along with his wife, a physician assistant. Also, his staff is actively recruiting another former resident to move back home: Dr. Noah Miller, who specializes in Family Medicine who will complete is residency in another year. Green said he wants to take a more active presence in the community on behalf of Mercy Regional Medical Center. In other Rotary News: - The Fall Rotary Social is planned for October 23 at Dr. Jerry Veillon’s camp; - A public hearing will be held October 18 in Lafayette by the the state Department of Transportation to get public comment on highway priorities. It was suggested to have a large group of citizens to attend to voice support for the four laning of US 167 from Ville Platte to Nuba;

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TOURNOI QUALIFYING SEPTEMBER 16, 2018 Seven additional riders qualified today (Sunday) to compete with the top ten riders from last year for the running of the Tournoi Sunday October 14. Steve “Buffy� Guillory told KVPI News that it was hot but fortunately no riders and their horses were injured in the competition. The seven that qualified are: Austin Trahan, Bryan Fontenot, Chuck Manuel, Cheyenne Crane, Cody Guillory, Bryce Johnson and Shane Trahan. We have both Father-son and a Mother-daughter teams. Shane is the son of Austin Trahan. Cheyenne is the daughter of Rider Lisa Crane who finished #7 last year and will be competing again this year. The seven new riders will compete with last year’s Top Ten: 2017 Champ Eric Guillory, Marcus Guillory, Ryan Haller, Kent Saucier, Alex Haller, Keith Saucier, Lisa Crane, John Ross, Paul Fontenot and Shane Lee. The Tournoi will be run at the Ward One Industrial Park at 2;00pm Sunday October 14 following the Grand Parade of Cotton. The Tournoi riders will be riding in the parade. KVPI will be covering the entire tournoi for those who cannot attend in person will be able to hear it on 92.5 KVPI FM. The 2018 Tournoi will be run in honor of Gerald Fontenot, a 25 year veteran of the Tournoi. He was the 1967 Tournoi Champ, Fastest Time award in 1962 and he received the Sportsmanship award in 1968. In 1987, he received a plaque of appreciation for his years of service to the Tournoi. The new Tournoi royalty will be attending the Tournoi: Miss 2018 La Tournoi is Taylor Grace Perrodin, the daughter of Brandy and Shannon Joubert and Rory Perrodin. She is a student at Pine Prairie High. The new Teen Tournoi Queen is Riana Perrodin, the daughter of Clarissa Daigle and Dustin Perrodin. She is a student of Pine Prairie High School. Retired Tournoi riders will keep score and time. Also assisting with the scores will be Past Champion and Tournoi rider Winston Guillory.

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The Evangeline Chamber of Commerce conducted a workshop geared to help local and area small businesses start a new business or to help grow their business. Chamber Director Renee Brown conducted the meeting and Chamber President Luke Deville welcomed a number of businesses who attended the Thursday after meeting. Among the guest speakers who spoke to the group included: Seth Norris, C.P.A., who spoke about new tax changes impacting businesses; Destin Ortego with the Opportunity machine who talked about his services to help entrepreneurs and start up businesses get the training they need; Heidi Melancon with the U.L. Small Business Development Center and Larry Dents Jr. with TruFund who discussed finances for new businesses. Those in attendance had a roundtable discussion and survey to decide on topics for future workshops such as marketing and using social media. The group also discussed planning a chamber sponsored “Shop Local Christmas kickoff� promotion. Maggie Eades is the chairperson of the promotion. Chamber members will be polled to decide on a date in November for the kickoff date.

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Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue reports the arrest of two. On Monday September 10, 2018 at approximately 7:45 p.m. Ville Platte Police Officers responded to a report of Shots fired in the area of Edward Knotoe Thomas Street. Upon arrival Officers learned one individual was walking on the street and a second individual was in a car at the intersection of Edward Knotoe Thomas Street and South Soileau Street. It is also reported that a black female and a one year old child were also in the car at the time of the incident. Each of the two suspects fired a weapon and multiple bullet holes were found in the vehicle. No one was injured during the exchange. After further investigation two arrests were made. On Tuesday September 11, 2018 Officers and Detectives located one of the suspects who fled the area and was captured after a short foot pursuit from Young Street to South Soileau. Once Officers captured and searched the suspect they located a handgun in the front pocket of the suspect. The 16 year old black male was arrested and charged with three counts of attempted first degree murder, one count of possession of a firearm by a juvenile and one count of resisting an officer. The juvenile remains in the custody at this time. On Wednesday September 12, 2018 Dequandray Thomas, 20 of 806 North Latour, apartment 52, Ville Platte was arrested and charged with one count of attempted second degree murder. Thomas was transferred to the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Jail and remains incarcerated on a $100,000.00 bond. Chief Neal Lartigue reminds everyone to report illegal activity immediately by calling 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.

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The owners of the new Whistle Stop business Tuesday addressed the Mayor and City Council to clarify their intention with their request to sell alcohol at their store. They originally checked the wrong box on the permit, which would have allowed them to sell alcohol and have it consumed on the premises, as is done for restaurants. The Whistle Stop said that was a mistake, and that they only want to sell packaged alcohol that cannot be consumed at the site. The ARC and city council requested that the Whistle Stop provide security, discourage loitering, and provide signage to discourage customers from parking at the ARC. Concern was also given for the citizens who are sometimes in residence at the ARC. The Whistle Stop owners were eager to oblige and said they plan on being very considerate. The council approved the Whistle Stop’s permit to sell packaged alcohol. The Ville Platte Fire Chief, Chris Harrison, said the city received 39 calls, and there were no fatalities. City Engineer, Ronnie Landreneau, reminded the council about the proposed L-GAP funds, which the city wants to use for a new Ville Platte welcome sign near Tobacco Plus. Mayor Vidrine said the idea is to have a wall with flags, a fountain, lights, and a motto. The city will later take suggestions from the public as to what type of motto to put on the wall. In other action, a Ville Platte resident approached the council to ask what can be done about the city’s drainage problems. The same citizen approached the Evangeline Parish Police Jury the night before, where he was told by the jury that they want to help by providing their equipment and labor, but that the city would have to reimburse them. Councilman Bryant Riggs seemed to take issue with the police jury, saying there’s a difference between helping someone and charging them. He said it’s a money issue and went on to say some people think the city doesn’t have enough money for projects because they hear about council members getting raises, but he said that’s a small amount compared to civil lawsuits. He said, “Our money is being spent on civil lawsuits.� Councilman Mike Perron agreed with the citizen that something needs to be done about the drainage issue. Mayor Vidrine said 16 more properties have been cleaned up or demolished since the last city council meeting. She and City Attorney Eric LaFleur spoke about revamping communications between city departments. They said the new system will be web-based and state-of-the-art. Mayor Vidrine also announced, with much glee, that the McDonald’s driveway is fixed, and DOTD are working on the entrance to Popeye’s. In other action, the council approved alcohol permits for the following: Mark’s Corner & Drive Thru Hebert’s Boudin & Cracklin’s, LLC Cheap & Best, LLC The Louisiana Cotton Festival Mayor Vidrine wore a Sacred Heart Trojans jersey because she said she lost a bet when her alma mater, Ville Platte High, lost to the Trojans in the Tee Cotton Bowl. However, she said she was very proud of both teams. In other business, Mayor Jennifer Vidrine read the expenditure report. Total expenses for the month of July, 2018, was $189,011.05 Total for the month of August was $208,903.51. Additional expenses were at the end of the quarter. Some expenses were paid to Acadian Ambulance to transport inmates, and two pump stations unexpectedly broke and needed repairs. The council renewed their sponsorship of Evangeline Council on Aging Public Transit. The council approved the hiring of 4 new people to the Ville Platte Police Department: a dispatcher and three parol officers.

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The Ville Platte Rotary Club today (Tuesday) heard from Michelle Bergeron, development director at The Refinery, formerly “Lighthouse Mission� of Opelousas. Bergeron shared a video presentation of the newly constructed men’s shelter on South Street in Opelousas. The facility can house up to 64 men who are homeless, who have no families, just out of prison or rehab and have no place to start over. Bergeron said the home gives men their dignity back, gives them a second chance by feeding, housing and clothing them, educating and helping them find employment. The home is a regimented faith based program where most residents satay an average of 9 months before getting on their own. Funding comes from private sources and public grants. Bergeron was the special guest of Rotarian Nicole Wenger. It was also announced that the Christian and Care Center is running short on food. Care and Share officials are asking for your generosity in making a food donation, monetary donations and donations of frozen food or wildgame. The center has a freezer to store the frozen food. The center helps the poor and needy in the Ville Platte area.

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EPSO Inmate Attempts Suicide Sheriff Eddie Soileau, of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office has released the following: At 0820 hours on Wednesday August 29, 2018 an inmate in Cell #1 of the Evangeline Parish Jail shook the cell gates to gain the attention of Jailors on Duty. The inmate advised the Jailors of another inmate attempting suicide. Once inside Assistant Warden Sylvester Bradley and Deputy Jailor Barry Giglio discovered a white male inside the Cell hanging from the A/C vent by the use of a ripped towel applied around his neck. Deputy Giglio’s extensive training allowed him to react and respond quickly without hesitation. He immediately grabbed the white male inmate from around his waist, slightly lifted him up, and then directed Assistant Warden Bradley to cut the towel from the A/C vent. Deputy Jailor Giglio immediately laid the white male across a nearby bunk and began to administer Chest compression which caused the white male to begin breathing again. Acadian Ambulance arrived and transported inmate to Mercy Regional Hospital for further medical evaluation and treatment.

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The Evangeline Parish School Board met Wednesday, September 05, 2018. During the meeting, CFO Amy LaFleur discussed the budget, which included the general fund, parish-wide maintenance, Basile maintenance, and the Basile High School athletic fund. The ending fund balance for the 2017-2018 school year is $13,005,388.54 (13 million, 5 thousand, 388 dollars and 54 cents). LaFleur said, “We closed with a good year.� The board approved the proposed general fund budget for the 2018-2019 school year at $7,755,802.48 (7 million, 7 hundred 55 thousand, 8 hundred 2 dollars and 48 cents). Superintendent Darwan Lazard thanked LaFleur for a job well-done, year after year. Lazard said he toured 10 of the 12 schools around the parish and said the new track at the Basile High School “is truly a marvel.� The Mamou High School gym floor is under construction, and the school is selling cutouts of the old gym floor. Construction should be finished by October. Lazard said the police brought drug-sniffing dogs to the schools, and there were no reports of drugs found. Hubert Mabe with First Student said buses ran smoothly for the first week of school, and they are committed to the safety of the students. The board approved the following: The Child Nutrition Program plans to advertise for bids for large food service equipment and to advertise to receive bids for a cafeteria redesign at Mamou High School and Ville Platte High School. Accept the low price quote for new auditorium seating at Mamou High School using the parish-wide maintenance fund. Agreed to spend $15,511.92 for smart panels for four new classrooms at W.W. Stewart Elementary School. In new business, the board approved the following: $17,145.40 for new IPads for teachers to access online curriculum. $11,395.00 for Chromebooks and cart for Pine Prairie High School Kindergarten classrooms.

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Rotary Club Gets Emergency Medical Info September 4, 2018 The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from Karen Buroker, a registered nurse and Region Four Emergency Response Coordinator for the Acadiana Region. With Tropical Storm Gordon preparing to strike the Gulf coast tonight, Buroker shared with Rotary Club Members tips and advice to prepare for a storm. She shared special preparedness guides issued by the state. She urged residents to go online to get a game for lots of useful information. She urged families should prepare an emergency supply checklist that includes food, personal items, clothing and bedding, papers and valuables, safety supplies, prescriptions and medicines, first aid supplies and cooking equipment. She also urged that your plans should include a plan for your pets while you may be gone for several days. Karen was the special guest of Rotarian Bob Buroker. In other business, Club President Richard LeJeune announced that the club will prepare special Christmas baskets for ten needy families for the holidays. He is asking club members to turn in names for review.

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Ville Platte Police Chief Neal Lartigue reports a juvenile arrest. On August 30, 2018 at approximately 11:00 a.m. The Ville Platte Police Department Officers and Detectives responded to a report of a black male juvenile carrying a gun near Ville Platte High School. Ville Platte High School officials placed the school on lockdown and contacted the Ville Platte Police Department immediately. Officers and Detectives arrived in the area of high school drive and Cotton Street and began their investigation. Information obtained led them to a residence on High School Drive. Upon arrival the juvenile would not open the door and parents were contacted to return to the residence to gain entry. Once the parent arrived, entry was made and a fourteen year old black male juvenile was taken into custody. Inside the residence a 9 millimeter gun was located and was found to have been reported stolen from the Mamou area. The juvenile was charged with one count of illegal possession of a stolen firearm, one count of illegal possession of a handgun by a juvenile and one count of possession of a firearm in a school zone. Chief Lartigue stated that someone reporting what they saw provided Officers and Detectives with information that assisted them with removing a dangerous weapon from the streets of our city. Had this information not been reported in a timely manner, the outcome could have been much different. It is important for the community that suspicious activity gets reported quickly. To report suspicious or illegal activity please call the Ville Platte Police Department at 363-1313. Your call will remain anonymous.

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Sheriff Eddie Soileau, of the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office has released the following: Home Burglary Reported on Friday Afternoon On Friday, August 24, 2018, there was a Burglary committed in the Tate Cove area of Evangeline Parish. The Burglary occurred on the 3000 block of Tate Cove Road at an unknown time. The suspects entered the residence through the home’s French doors. While the suspect/s was inside the home they only canvassed the Master Bedroom. Other than jewelry only one firearm was taken (nickel plated silver Ruger SR9C 9mm pistol). Also taken from the residence were a female wedding ring and a male class ring. Both items are valued at approximately $800.00 individually. No suspect has been identified at this time. Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office is asking that everyone remain Vigilant at all times and report any suspicious activity immediately to Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Office Investigations Division @ 337-363-2161, your local Law Enforcement Agency, or in an Emergency dial 9-1-1. All callers shall and will remain anonymous.

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AUGUST 29, 2018


    The Evangeline Parish Public Library is proud to release the following statistics for this year’s Summer Reading Program . Library patrons checked out a total of 7, 803 books throughout the parish. Here are the top readers for each library Branch: Basile Branch-Ages 0-3- Rhen Fontenot, Brenlee Toups, Audrey and Avery LeBleu, Ages 4-7- Rhett Fontenot , Ages 8-11-Ross Bertrand and Ages 12-17 Amayah Bertrand; Mamou Branch- Ages 0-3- Rowan King, Ages 4-7- Kierstan Freeman, Ages 8-11- Damien Hebert, Ages 12-17 Cecilyah Cole; Pine Prairie Branch—Ages 0-3 Rosalee Melancon, ages 4-7- Annalise Melancon, Ages 8-11-Emily Freeman, Ages 12-17- Kenwin Hazelton; Turkey Creek Branch-: Ages 0-2- Ben Davis and Angelynn Davie, ages 4-7- Aston King, Ages 8-11 Laila King and Ages 12-17- Selina Soleau; Ville Platte Branch- ages 0-2- Marian Andrus, ages 4-7 Aidan Davis, Ages 8-11 Isabelle Andrus and Ages 12-17- Sara Duplechin. Congratulations to these Top Readers and to all the readers who took part in the Summer Reading program.

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    James “Spanky” Vidrine, manager with Union Tank Car of Ville Platte was the guest speaker at today’s (Tuesday) meeting of the Ville Platte Rotary Club. He was the special guest of Rotarian Dr. Hosea “Joey” Soileau.

   Vidrine said the history of Union Tank Car can be traced 128 years ago with the formation of the rail industry with the Rockefeller family needing a rail system to transport oil. Union Tank is the largest rail tank car company in North America.

   Union Tank is now owned by the Moorman Company, a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway whose chairman is the famous billionaire Warren Bufffet. Nationwide, Union Tank has about 3-4,000 people employed.

    Union Tank has three divisions: Leasing. The company leases tank cars at about $700 each per month; Manufacturing division with two locations: in Alexandria and a site in Texas. The facilities can produce 20-25 cars a day at a cost of $90,000 each to manufacture. He said the Alexandria site is a huge facility. The third division is the repair unit. Ville Platte is a repair site. There are 11 repair shops throughout the country .

   All tank cars, by law, must be serviced, cleaned and refurbished at least every ten years. After 50 years, the tank cars must be scrapped.

   The Ville Platte location was opened 51 years ago. The facility is employing about 141 workers with about 75 percent of the crew from the immediate Ville Platte area.

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    The Rotary Club of Ville Platte today (Tuesday) heard from Major Wayne Vidrine with the Louisiana State Police. Also with him at the meeting was Public Information Officer Brooks David.

    Vidrine, a resident of the Ville Platte area, a 25 year veteran of the State Police has just been promoted from Troop I Commander to State Police Regional Command Inspector. Also, David who has been working for the past four years with the news media as public information officer has also been promoted to a new position.

   Vidrine spoke on how state police and rotary have a lot in common on ethical and moral leadership. He gave two examples on leaders who were good at team building: Bill Gates of Microsoft and Steve Jobs of Apple.

    He reported that state troopers are now using E tickets where tickets  are generated electronically and are being sent directly to the District Attorney and courts, body cams worn by police officers and crash reports that can be sent immediately to accident victims.

   It was also reported that unmarked state police vehicles are patrolling interstate highways in the state looking for drug dealers, speeders and those texting while driving.

   The guest speakers were the guests of Rotarian Dr. Ted Ardoin.

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Superintendent Darwan Lazard announced at Wednesday’s school board meeting that Mamou Elementary has made history by becoming a certified French immersion program; the first in Evangeline Parish. 
“Mamou Elementary has accomplished something that I don’t think has been accomplished before.” Said Superintendent Lazard. He continued, “You do remember that they just completed their first year with a French immersion program, and they were only 1 of 3 schools in the state of Louisiana to be certified this year.” 
Tuesday, Mamou faculty and staff and those involved in the French immersion program went to Baton Rouge to be recognized by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. 
Nina David, curriculum coordinator for Mamou Elementary approached the podium to speak about the process of becoming certified, stating that typically schools aren’t approved after only one year. “I think they saw our effort, our desire, to excel in French immersion in our first year, because Mamou is the Cajun Capital of the world, and where else should it be?” said David. 
Those involved with the success of the French immersion program (teachers, faculty, staff) were recognized by Principal Mitchell Troy Fontenot, who thanked them for their hard work, and stated “Evangeline is a model district for French immersion.”
When discussing how the first day of school went for Evangeline Parish public schools Superintendent Lazard stated,  “we had a very good opening day”. As done in the past, Lazard and Assistant Superintendent Mike Lombas visited all 12 schools on the first day. 
Other business:
Public hearing to be held September 19, 2018 for replacement of sewer plant at Bayou Chicot Elementary School to be funded by a USDA loan. 
Approved payment of $27,654.00 to remove and replace the first story wood floor finish at Bayou Chicot Elementary. 
Approved requisition for $8,117.89 for appliances for new special education kitchen, lab, and classroom at Pine Prairie High School using idea funds. 
Approved requisition for $11,395.00 for 30 Chromebooks and charging cart for Mamou Elementary School to provide technology in 3rd and 4th grade classrooms for LEAP 2025 instruction using Title I school-wide funds. 


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Thomas McFarlain, representing the Evangeline ARC and the special needs clients they serve, addressed the Ville Platte City Council Tuesday to request that the city stop a new bar called “The Whistle Bar” from opening across the street from their location at the corner of Lasalle and North-West Railroad Avenue.


“You are all aware of the day program and educational activities operating in the old Deville Lumber Company building for the last 20 odd years.” stated McFarlain. “There are 55 governmentally disabled men and women from Ville Platte, Mamou, and throughout the parish area that attend our program every day. They are instructed in various activities, such that they may improve their ability to participate in society and integrate into the society. In addition, there is a home for 6 disabled men on the property. These men reside there, just as we live in our homes, but need structure and normalcy of community living to provide progress in their lives as productive citizens of Ville Platte. Further, there is a respite program across the street that is used by 8 disabled individuals primarily on weekends. Their parents or guardians send them there as a get away from their homes, or other necessary absences from their homes for medical reasons or family emergencies. There they are transported to various events in or around Ville Platte and nearby cities to attend social activities. These developmentally disabled men and women that live on the property attend the day programs, and temporarily house disabled individuals that are referred to the Evangeline ARC by the state of Louisiana. These individuals need structured environments. A strict routine for their daily lives to progress as citizen’s. Changes or disruptions in their lives is detrimental to their health, aggravate their disabilities, and generally bring disruption to their lives.”


McFarlain then requested that the city reject Whistle Bar’s application. Mayor Vidrine offered to show fairness to Whistle Bar’s owners by inviting them to the next City Council meeting to explain the type of establishment they’d be opening.


Mayor Jennifer Vidrine announced during her monthly report that the council received an honorable mention at the LMA conference, recognizing Ville Platte for being the only city in the state to keep its citizens informed via automated phone calls from the mayor. Mayor Vidrine also announced that 6 more abandoned properties have been cleared, and plans are underway to enforce citations for land owners who don’t maintain their properties.


Other News:


Council member Bryant Riggs announced to the council his plans to fix up Ville Platte Northside Park, by giving up a year’s salary, and seeking out grants and coordinating fundraisers for the project. “We have to have something for everybody, not just the kids, but also for the disabled, A.D.D, senior citizens, children of all ages, and adults of all ages. that’s what I vision.” stated Riggs.


Alex “Sonny” Chapman addressed the council regarding improvement plans for the entrances and exits of Tate Cove Road businesses, in particular McDonalds and Popeyes. Chapman stated that the driveways not being flush with the road poses safety issues, and is an inconvenience to drivers. According to Mayor Vidrine, McDonalds has agreed to make the needed fixes, but Popeyes parking lot entrance belongs to Stage, and further steps need to be taken.


Ville Platte Police Chief Neil Lartigue announced the hiring of Darius Thomas as a part time jailor. During his monthly report, Lartigue stated that for the month of July the Ville Platte Police Department responded to a total of 504 calls for assistance, 490 of which required assistance. Also reported were 17 citations, 69 arrests (26 felony arrests) and 26 motor vehicle accidents. There were no fatalities to report.







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     Glenn Fields, Executive Director of Louisiana Folk Roots, was the guest speaker today (Tuesday) at the weekly luncheon of the Rotary Club of Ville Platte. He was the special guest of Rotarian Renee Brown.

     Louisiana Folk Roots has partnered with The Grand Hoorah to return Folk Roots back to Chicot State Park during the past two years.

     Fields said Louisiana Folk Roots wants to introduce in Evangeline Parish and in other area parishes an after school music program to instruct young people how to play Cajun music with the help of local musicians.

    Folk Roots, along with Prairie Heritage who sponsors the Grand Hoorah and Codofil are supporting and encouraging the launch of these instructional programs.

    He plans to reach out after the holidays to local businesses and industry to assist in funding the cost of musical instruments.

    It was announced that the Ville Platte Chamber of Commerce will have a Business after Hours event at The Hatchery in Vidrine at 5;00pm Wednesday. Also, there will be a ground breaking for the new Teet’s Food Store location Friday morning at 10:00am.


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    Mayor Jennifer Vidrine addressed the members of the Ville Platte Rotary Club during their noon luncheon today (Tuesday).

     The mayor spoke a lot about economic development and new businesses coming to town: Café Evangeline just had their grand opening last week at the bank note location, La Bonnes Vie will be taking over the Flat Town Music building, Teet’s Food Store will be constructing a new store across the road from their current location, Domino’s Pizza will be opening at the old Mexican restaurant on Tate Cove Road, a Chicken King restaurant and an Urgent Care walk in clinic.

   Mayor Jennifer also mentioned that McDonald’s promises to fix the bump at their entrance from Tate Cove road once their renovation work is completed. She also mentioned that the city will be installing new more powerful LED lights along Main Street. Also, the city is looking at purchasing additional street cameras in high crime areas. Currently the city has ten cameras.

   The city is expected to get in 17 new vehicles that will have tracking devices. Also, the Fire Department has applied for a new $800,000 ladder truck to replace its old ladder truck. She is also seeking a grant from the state to revitalize the Main Street area.

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The Evangeline Parish Police Jury was presented their 2017 audit report by CPA Vic Slaven during Monday’s monthly meeting. Slaven reported that the audit had the same findings as the previous year, but nothing serious. According to Slaven, the police jury ended the year with a positive fund balance of $1,685,000.


Evangeline Parish Tax Assessor Dirk Deville addressed the Jury with his decision to run for the October 2019 Sheriff election. “Some have asked why?” said Deville “It’s actually quite simple. When I was called on to assist the Evangeline Parish Sheriff’s Department in its recent fiscal recovery, the challenge was fresh and exhilarating.” Deville stated that if he becomes Sheriff he will be “committed and dedicated to making Evangeline Parish a safer, more secure and better place to live.”



Other business:


Introduced and approved a resolution in support of Bryan Vidrine’s candidacy for Police Jury Association of Louisiana.


Reviewed and adopted the 2018 millages.


Appointed Stephanie Smith to Evangeline tourism board.


Reappointed RL Quam to Evangeline Parish Water District #1 for a five-year term.


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