Evangeline Chamber of Commerce Meeting
July 29, 2020
The Evangeline Parish Chamber of Commerce Wednesday held a virtual meeting with Chamber President Dr. Gwen Fontenot conducting.
The chamber board will be reviewing nominations to replace former member Mark Suellentrop who has left the area. The election of the new board member will take place in early August.
She said it has been a challenge for the chamber and tourism since its executive director and assistant both resigned. Dr. Fontenot commended Elizabeth West who has been working for the tourism board and has volunteered to assist with office work for the chamber as well. The chamber is due to hire a temporary part time assistant in the near future.
Both the chamber and tourism boards are due to meet soon to discuss whether to continue having one director handling both responsibilities in chamber and tourism or consider move forward as two separate organizations.
Tourism Director Jay Gielow told chamber members that he is hoping that the governor will allow each parish determine what phase they should be in whether than on a statewide level based on their case load.
Guest speaker State Representative Rhonda Butler urged small businesses to apply for the Main Street Recovery program where grants are given for up to $15,000 to pay for Covid-19 expenses.
She announced that her Economic Task Force will be meeting with Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser to help plan strategies and programs to help local businesses through tourism projects.
Butler said she is working with local officials to develop a drug court to help young people get off drugs rather than go to jail. She was able to assist Sheriff Charles Guillory in getting grant funds for new vehicles.
Connie Lamke with the Acosta Foundation is scheduling webinars to help local small businesses obtain needed grants.