We commented last week on the resignation of state Sen. Troy Hebert and have since learned that a special election to fill his vacant District 22 seat has been called for Jan. 22. The qualification period is right around the corner – Dec. 15-17 – so it will be a short, intense campaign.
Our state Rep. Fred Mills Jr. has announced that he will seek the office, as has New Iberia businessman Gordon Doerle. State Rep. Simone Champagne, a Republican from Jeanerette, is reportedly “seriously considering” a run for the office.
As I recall, Doerle and Hebert had some serious disagreements over a landfill operated by Doerle in the Iberia Regional Airport/Coteau area.
But I’m wondering what will happen if Mills wins the special election? Will that require another election to fill his old House seat?
The Legislature has two very important sessions coming up in early 2011: A special session to redistrict both the state House and Senate districts as well as all the other state districts – Supreme Court, Appeals Courts and Public Service Commission, plus the U.S. House of Representative districts – and a regular fiscal session in April.
The redistricting session will involve a lot of political maneuvering as all of those modifications required by the 2010 Census will be in place for the next 10 years, until the 2020 Census.
It’s a given that Louisiana will lose one of its seven Congressional seats, and it’s going to be a real battle to redraw those lines and require two incumbents ending up in the same district.
Louisiana has lost population, especially since Hurricane Katrina, and the population within the state has shifted rather drastically, especially in the coastal areas.
Any remapping efforts are made even more complicated by the need to retain a certain number of majority minority districts.
I suspect that redistricting is going to be a real battle.
THIS & THAT . . .
Big Easy Visit – Made a quick visit to New Orleans last week to attend a fraternity reunion in the French Quarter. Spent Thursday and Friday nights at Bayou Segnette State Park in the RV, driving into the city for the day on Friday.
I was a bit surprised at the number of tourists roaming about the Quarter, enjoying the pleasant weather. There were a number of street musicians and the usual sidewalk artists entertaining the crowds.
Enjoyed great meals at Mr. John’s Steakhouse Thursday evening and the Court of Two Sisters on Friday while renewing old acquaintances, including St. Martinville native Greg “Sneezy” Stockstill, whose career has taken him to a number of foreign countries over the years. He is now living in Miami.
Playoffs – The only area teams left in the state football playoffs are Acadiana and Patterson after Teurlings, St. Thomas More and Westgate were all eliminated last Friday. The state championship games are set for this Friday and Saturday in the Louisiana Superdome.
Cecilia fans probably don’t have to be reminded that it’s been 15 years since the Bulldogs claimed the state Class 3A title with a 12-9 win over Edna Karr back in 1995.
Karr is looking for another title this year. The Cougars (13-1) eliminated Teurlings Catholic last Friday and face Franklinton (13-1) for the 4A championship.
Pricey Pecans – We mentioned the high price of pecans last week and came across an AP article over the weekend that answered the questions I had regarding the $1-$1.15 prices being paid locally.
The article explained that the main reason for the increase is an explosion in the foreign demand for U.S. pecans. Exports of the tasty nut to China and Hong Kong have jumped from about 9.2 million pounds (in-shell) in 2006 to 88.6 million pounds last year!
USDA experts say this year’s crop will yield around 270 million pounds, with 8 million coming from Louisiana.
Anniversaries – Friends and subscribers who celebrated wedding anniversaries during the past week included:
Dec. 1 – The 59th anniversary for Rudolph and Mary Ann Landry of Breaux Bridge; and the 54th for Pierre and Velma (Theriot) Bienvenu of St. Martinville.
Dec. 2 – The 16th for Mike and Tiffany Jagneaux.
Dec. 3 - The 50th for Leo “Pope” and Judy (Angelle) Huval of Cecilia.
Dec. 4 – The 23rd for Todd and Mary (LeBlanc) Dugas of Cecilia.
Dec. 5 – The 57th for Lawrence and Irene Picard of Breaux Bridge; and the 13th for Fred and Gladys Coy of St. Martinville.
Dec. 6 – The ?? for Merlin and Linda Guidry of Breaux Bridge.
New subscribers who have joined our family of readers in recent weeks include Kristi West and Thomas Etienne of St. Martinville; Larry Guillot and Rocky Guidry of Breaux Bridge; Elsie Taylor of Arnaudville; and Al Jude Patin and Anthony Rodrigue of Lafayette.
Clair comme le jour: Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience. –Anonymous