News

Wed
27
Mar

High School Rodeo this weekend

Members of the 2018-19 LaSalle Riding Club Rodeo Team will host the 27th annual Louisiana High School Rodeo Association Jena Rodeo this Friday and Saturday, March 29-30, at the Jena Rodeo Arena.  Showtime will be at 7 p.m. each evening with gates opening at 6 p.m. Slack will be held beginning at 10 a.m. on Saturday morning. Rodeo Team members shown, from left, Charlie Paul, Brielle Smith, Samuel Keene, Meredith Scroggs, Maci Scroggs, and Landon Stapleton.

 

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Wed
27
Mar

Contract signed for new LaSalle Library

After years and years of planning, a contract for construction of the new La-Salle Parish Library in Jena was signed with Womack and Sons of Harrisonburg last Friday morning.

The new 12,500 sq. ft. state-of-the-art library building will be constructed on the site of the old Humphries Motors building and car lot, on First Street in Jena, at a cost of $2.6-million.

Seven bids were received from various contractors a little over a month ago, with Womack and Son of Harrisonburg submitting the lowest bid.

On behalf of the Board of Control, President Sammy J. Franklin finalized the contract with Womack and Son last Friday by signing the paperwork during a brief ceremony at the Library in Jena.

“This is a proud moment for the Library Board and for the citizens of La-Salle Parish,” Franklin said. “Much time,

energy, planning, and savings have gone into the efforts to secure this needed facility for the Jena area.”

 

Wed
27
Mar

Six Delta parishes named unhealthiest in La.

A recent study by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation notes the six northeast Louisiana parishes along the Delta which are deemed the unhealthiest in the state in which to live.

The study also says high housing costs can make it tougher for families to get better quality food, transportation, and medicine. LaSalle Parish was ranked as the #17 healthiest parish in the state, according to the study.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute released their annual report of the top 10 unhealthiest parishes.

East Caroll Parish ranked the worst, followed closely by Morehouse, Madison, Catahoula, Tensas, & Concordia Parishes. (View the complete list at the end of this story.)

Tensas Parish has the shortest life span of 45, according to the study.

 

Wed
20
Mar

Olla officials considering allowing motorized carts

The Town of Olla Council approved the introduction of three ordinances during their regular meeting last week with one being Ordinance 2019-004 involving the use of motorized carts within town limits.

The ordinance amends Chapter 18 Traffic and Motor Vehicles of the town’s code of ordinances providing the allowance of carts to be permitted to be driven on public streets, roads, pathways and at designated highway crossings and paths within the Town of Olla’s corporate limits, but the ordinance also states a long list of requirements for permission to do so including the issuance of a special permit, which will cost $20.00.

A brief discussion regarding the ordinance ensued between the Council, Mayor Rhonda Elliott and Police Chief Daniel Smith regarding the need for the ordinance and safety concerns involving those who currently use carts.

Wed
20
Mar

Investing in LaSalle…

Womack & Sons Construction Group of Harrisonburg is currently fulfilling two major contracts in LaSalle Parish and three more soon to be starting with a total construction price of approximately $8 million.

“We are extremely proud to be building in La-Salle Parish,” said Womack & Sons Co-Owner Chase Womack. “All of the projects set for this coming year will benefit the residents of La-Salle Parish and they signify a tremendous investment from the public bodies sponsoring these projects.”

Last Monday, the construction group began working on two of those projects, both for the Belah Fellowship Water System (BFWS).

According to David Vercher, BFWS Secretary/ Treasurer, the system has begun a total renovation of their system, including a new water treatment facility and new, larger lines throughout the system.

The total price tag for all of the renovation is estimated at $3,189,136.00 but when complete, the system should be set for many years.

Wed
20
Mar

Police Jury adopts new sexual harassment policy

The LaSalle Parish Police Jury took steps last week at their monthly meeting March 6 to abide by federal and state laws by establishing a sexual harassment policy.

The new laws mandate all public bodies and elected officials undergo extensive training concerning sexual harassment and was one of the topics featured at the recent police jury convention.

“This is something you do not want to mess around with and it better be done by the letter or the consequences will be severe,” LaSalle Parish District Attorney J. Reed Walters informed the jury at the meeting. “We have enacted it in our office and I have personally performed all the training of my employees, as is mandated by the law.”

The policy details everything about sexual harassment, from its definition, to reporting procedures, to investigation of complaints, mandatory training, and annual reporting requirements.

Wed
13
Mar

First load shipped from Urania

LaSalle Lumber Company has shipped the first truckload of lumber from its new state-of-the-art sawmill in Urania, LA. The mill began start-up operations in December, and is expected to reach full operation by the end of March.

“We’re very happy with how the startup process has gone to date,” said LaSalle Lumber Plant Manager Nick Landi. “With the first shipment of 21,000 board feet of 2x6 pine lumber last Thursday, we believe we are right on track to achieve full operation by the end of this month, and we hope to expand to two full shifts by May.”

Landi said the first truckload was sold to Hixson Lumber Sales, a large multi-state supplier of wood products, and shipped to its treatment plant in Caddo Mills, Texas.

Wed
13
Mar

Local bank executive dies

Prominent businessman and local leader Ned Sinclair Mc-Cann died last week.

McCann, 69, worked for Sabine State Bank for over 20 years as Vice President and Branch Manager of their Jena location and was a retired president of the Jena Housing Authority.

He was also a member of Nolley Memorial United Methodist Church and a member of the Jena Kiwanis Club. He was a former Regional Sales Manager for Petro-Lite and was a US Army veteran having served during the Vietnam War.

He was born on December 25, 1949, in Marksville, LA and died Wednesday, March 6, 2019.

Services were held Saturday, March 9, 2019, at 11:00 a.m. at Nolley Memorial United Methodist Church in Jena with Rev. Truman Stagg officiating.

 

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Wed
13
Mar

Parents call for investigation of School Superintendent

A large crowd was present at the LaSalle Parish School Board’s March 4 meeting last week in Jena with some parents calling for an investigation into Superintendent Janet Tullos.

For several weeks social media has been active with complaints against the school system, which originally began with some parents upset that Olla Elementary School Principal Dawn Book was placed on administrative leave in early February.

In a statement a couple of weeks ago, LPSB Attorney John Guice said that school board members, the superintendent, nor any employees could comment on any personnel matters as it would be a violation of law.

OES parent Kyli Smith, who has become a vocal critic of issues, asked to be placed on the March 4 agenda to address some of those issues.

 

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Wed
06
Mar

Recreating History

Members of the LSUE Lady Bengals basketball team performed three of Jelly Piggot’s Jena Lady Giants’ pregame warm-up drills during their final home game of the season last Wednesday night in Eunice. The girls wanted to do the routine as a tribute to the former Lady Giants and a show of respect for their dedication 50 years ago..

 

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