News

Wed
03
Feb

LaSalle Parish Students of the Year

LaSalle Parish Students of the Year

LaSalle Parish Students of the Year were recognized Monday night at the February meeting of the LaSalle Parish School Board. The 2020-21 honor students are shown: seated, Leah Steen, elementary; left, Alex Hodges, middle/junior high; and Hannah Parker, high school level. These students will now compete for the regional titles in their respective divisions, and winners at the regional competition goes on to state completion. Find complete details about each honoree and the essay they included in their applications, in a story inside this issue of your weekly newspaper.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wed
27
Jan

LaSalle leaders reflect on year 2020

LaSalle leaders reflect on year 2020

The terms “unprecedented,” “unusual,” and “trying times” have all been overused in describing the year 2020 but they are all exactly right.

A year that saw COVID-19 literally shutdown all aspects of life, then riots during the months leading up to one of the most divisive Presidential elections in recent history, all added up to a year that most people would just as well forget.

The Jena Times Olla-Tullos-Urania Signal asked many parish leaders to share their views on this previous year and offer insight to our future. The following article is the responses from several that responded to our request.

 

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Wed
27
Jan

Police Jury re-elect officers at meeting

Police Jury re-elect officers at meeting

President Robert “June” Fowler, District 5, and Vice President Jerrod Douglas, District 1, were re-elected by fellow jurors to serve during calendar year 2021.

As incoming new members of the Jury a year ago, these men were chosen to lead the Jury and now have been elected to a second term.

The first act of business at the first meeting each January is selecting officers to serve during the ensuing year. Another task for that first meeting of the year is to set the regular monthly meeting time, which jurors kept for the first Monday of the month at 6 p.m.

The January meeting opened with a public hearing to receive comments concerning the Jury’s intent to take Rainbow Road out of the Parish Road System in District 9. With no comments being received, the jury approved the measure during the regular meeting.

 

Wed
27
Jan

Foundation awards school grants

Foundation awards school grants

The Cliff Williams Memorial Foundation has provided educators in LaSalle Parish with more than $1,365,865.46 in grants since it was formed in 1990. For the current school year, a total of $75,269.79 in grants was approved by the Foundation for various teachers in the LaSalle Parish School System.

The Foundation was formed when Justiss Oil Company honored the memory of Cliff Williams with an endowment gift to be used for the educational needs of children in LaSalle Parish.

Cliff, the son of Pat and the late Charles Williams of Jena, was married to Jennifer Justiss Williams Loe, and is the father of Amy Williams Kunkel and Adam Williams.

Cliff was a petroleum engineer and Justiss Oil Company’s Vice-President of Drilling and Production Operations for seven years prior to his untimely death about 30 years ago.

 

Wed
20
Jan

Urania officials okay applying for two grants

The Urania Town Council and Mayor Terri Corley discussed the upcoming applications for the 2020-2021 CWEF (Community Water Enrichment Fund) grant and LGAP (Local Government Assistance Program) grant last week during their monthly meeting.

In regard to the LGAP, the Council decided to apply for $35,000 toward the purchase of a new ¾ ton four-wheel drive single cab pick-up truck for maintenance department. Mayor Corley brought up the need for a four-wheel drive vehicle to access some of the roads, the plant and lift stations. She said the current maintenance vehicles are having issues.

In regard to the LGAP, the Council decided to apply for $35,000 to install new isolation valves as well as replace several old ones and replace the main water lines between Pentecostal Church Road leading to the water treatment plant. She added that the CWEF can only be used for water.

 

 

Wed
20
Jan

Qualifying for spring election next three days

Qualifying for the spring 2021 election will be held for the next three days - Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, January 20-22 - according to LaSalle Clerk of Court Steve D. Andrews.

Three special elections have been called, one for Fifth District U.S. Representative, one for a school board member and the other for a police jury member. Gov. John Bel Edwards called a special election in the Fifth Congressional District to elect someone to fill the unexpired term of Rep-Elect Luke Letlow, who died on December 29, 2020, just days before taking office. Letlow was elected in the fall 2020 elections to fill the seat being vacated by his boss, Rep. Ralph Abraam, M.D., of Alto.

The Police Jury called a special election in District 3 for March 20 to elect someone to fill the unexpired term of the late Jerry Harris.

 

 

Wed
20
Jan

LPSB elects new officers

LPSB elects new officers
LPSB elects new officers
LPSB elects new officers

The LaSalle Parish School Board elected new officers during their first meeting on the new year last Monday night, January 11, along with taking care of other routine business.

The board unanimously elected Ward 6 Board Member Buddy Bethard as the 2021 School Board President. Bethard replaced Melvin Worthington of Ward 9 who served during 2020.

In presenting the outgoing president with the customary engraved gavel gift, LaSalle Superintendent Janet Tullos thanked Worthington for his outstanding leadership.

“This was a very trying year and we were thankful to have Mr. Worthington guiding us through it,” she said during the presentation. “Thank you for your service.”

 

 

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Wed
20
Jan

Students of the Year

Students of the Year

Students of the Year for each LaSalle Parish school recently took part in the district-wide interview portion as they seek the coveted title of Student of the Year for their various divisions. The winners will be announced in two weeks and they will be recognized at the February school board meeting. 

 

 

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Wed
13
Jan

Prominent oil executive dies

Prominent oil executive dies

This country lost a great patriot, the oil and gas industry lost a dedicated and high qualified professional, and LaSalle Parish lost an outstanding community leader last Thursday morning.

James F. Justiss, Jr, 89, passed away at home in Trout early Thursday, January 7th, 2021, surrounded by his family.

James is survived by his wife of 68 years, Jenna Fae Whatley Justiss; daughter, Jennifer Justiss Williams Loe and husband Reggie; son, James F. “Jim” Justiss, III and wife Donna; grandchildren, Amy Williams Kunkel and husband Matt, Adam J. Williams and wife Maggie, Emma Justiss, Walker Johnson and Richard Johnson. He also leaves behind six “greats”, as he called them: Lane, Owen and Jack Kunkel and Charlotte, Claire and Ben Williams.

He was preceded in death by his parents, James F. “Jick” Justiss and Wilma Augusta “Mac” Morphis Justiss; his sister, Paula Justiss Maddox Ordoyne; brother, Eddy Mac Justiss; and son-in-law, Cliff Williams.

 

Wed
13
Jan

Retail sales good for 2020

Retail sales good for 2020

Despite the shutdown created by the coronavirus pandemic early last year, retail sales for the year just ended remained very strong. Sales parish wide was down only 3.5%, but in the Town of Jena, sales were up by more than 12.5%.

Retail sales in LaSalle Parish are based on sales tax collections in 2020 as released last week by the Concordia Sales Tax Collection Agency, which collect sales taxes for several bodies in the parish.

Overall, retail sales in 2020 parish wide stood at $258.6-million, compared to $267.8-million during the previous year of 2019.

When the Covid-19 pandemic hit in mid-March, non-essential businesses were closed for several months. However, essential businesses stayed open and continued to operate at a higher level than before the pandemic.

 

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