(318) 352-2714 info@npgov.org

PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATCHITOCHES PARISH COUNCIL

PARISH OF NATCHITOCHES, STATE OF LOUISIANA

TAKEN A REGULAR MEETING HELD, MONDAY,

March 18, 2019

5:30 p.m.

The Natchitoches Parish Council met in regular and legal session in the Council Board Room of the Natchitoches Parish Courthouse, on Monday, March 18,2019 for a Regular of Natchitoches Parish Council meeting at five (5:30) o’clock p.m. and for the Natchitoches Parish Council Meeting.

The Parish of Natchitoches was then convened as the governing authority by Chairman Patsy Ward Hoover who stated that the Parish was ready for the transaction of business.

The invocation was given by Chairman Rodney Bedgood and the Pledge of Allegiance led by Councilman Doug de Graffenried.

After the roll call there were present Chairman Rodney Bedgood and Council: Russell Rachal, Doug de Graffenried, and Chris Paige.

Patsy Ward-Hoover came in after the roll call was done.

Absent: None.

The Parish Council Clerk at this time would like to amend the agenda to add items:

  1. Council and Attorney to discuss ROV appointment.
  2. Council to approve Head Start COLA for 1.77 percent. Total is 14,176.
  3. Council to consider a Resolution authorizing the Parish     resident to execute the certificate of substantial completion for construction of the Hampton Road Improvement Project completed by    W.L. Bass Construction, Inc. (a copy of the resolution is attached.
  4. Council to consider authorizing the Parish President to sign and execute an LCDBG agreement in the amount of $756,300 for sewer renovation in Payne Subdivision.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby amend the agenda to add: Council and Attorney to discuss ROV appointment, Council to approve Head Start COLA for 1.77 percent. Total is    14,176, Council to consider a Resolution authorizing the Parish resident to execute the certificate of substantial completion for construction of the Hampton Road Improvement Project completed by W.L. Bass Construction, Inc. (a copy of the resolution is   attached, and Council to consider authorizing the Parish President to sign and execute an LCDBG agreement in the amount of $756,300 for sewer renovation in Payne Subdivision.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood   

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried        Motion Passed

Chairman Bedgood stated the next item was to recognize any invited guests. There was none.

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next agenda item we will hear the report of the Public Works Director, Mr. John Richmond. Mr. Richmond had already sent his reports and asked were there any questions or comments, there were none.

Mr. Richmond wanted to summarize year to date things they put out about 4,250 cubic yards of material over the last 2 months, we accepted phones calls that comes into the office we have about 500 phones calls over the last 2 months and those calls resulted in 536 jobs year to date, two dozen culverts have been replaced and put in.

Councilman Rachal wanted to ask, Mr. Richmond a question, “Mr. Richmond when someone comes to get a permit or apply for a permit for hauling or whatever, if they go out and damage a road, What, do we bill them for, when it comes time to fix the problem? Mr. Richmond, replied, “We bill them for what is done, now we’re starting something new from my tenue we’ve started to video tape the road, that we’re giving permits on that was inconsistent over the previous years, but we’re doing this with all our permits now. We have a record of what exactly that road looked like before they started working on it, and if there’s any damage we’re to assess them for the damages, and we’re to charge them for such things as the material, labor and related labor charges and equipment.” Councilman Rachal, replied, “Are we going to charge them for that?” Mr. Richmond replied, “Yes, we will.” Councilman Rachal, responded, “Have we been charging them?” Mr. Richmond, replied, “That I don’t know, that was before my tenure, I know we’re going to do it now.” Councilman, Rachal, replied, “I know a while back when I looked it wasn’t any charges for labor or material, we’re falling way short, and we need to stick to the Ordinance and make them fix it back or charge for the permits or something.” Mr. Richmond responded, “There’s a matter of clarity to what we’ve seen recently a week of two up in the North end of the Parish on Johnson Road and we haven’t had to charge them anything because they repaired it themselves and we sent our Motor grader operator and they’ve been very cooperative, it’s all about communications, if we enforce the permit early, you don’t have a whole lot of problems later. A copy of the Ordinance goes with their permit, they have that.”

Councilwoman, Hoover, wanted to ask a question, but didn’t know whom to ask it to. Councilwoman, Hoover begins by saying, “Mr. Earl Townsend is no longer the Public Works, Director, you are; so, he’s still working, what’s it costing the Parish for you, Earl Townsend in that position, how much it’s costing the Parish and How long is Mr. Earl still going to be on?” Mr. Richmond, responded, “I can answer most of that for you.  Earl salary remains unchanged; however he’s no longer salary he’s a hourly employee and only pays for when he’s there, he has taken some time off and he’s about to only work part time and I believe the budget has included him up to six months our  goal is not to use him for six months and we’ve been talking about it on a regularly basis and by the end of this month he probably will be phasing out considerably to only where he’s only to ask questions from me.”

Parish President, replied, “Mrs. Hoover that was necessary to get a smooth transition.” and while he’s talking Councilwoman Hoover was saying, I understand that I just want it to go on record that he’s not there because there has been some concerns about salaries at the Highway Department and how long he’s going to stay, I don’t know this information so I asked the person who could, I appreciate you.”

Chairman, Bedgood, then recognizes Ms. Sharon Harris, OCS/Head Start Executive Director, she gave her reports in the Council’s packets and wanted to know if they had any questions, comments or concerns on the reports. Ms. Harris wanted to inform the Council about on tomorrow there going to be a CDI (Community Development Institute) that is what it’s called  and they are coming to the Head Start building to do an on-site visit, it’s not a monitoring visit it’s an on site visit to check out our facilities being that we’re going to have a transition to a new Grantee and they’re wanting to see what shape our buildings are in, and they will be here tomorrow beginning at 9:00am.”

Councilwoman, Hoover begins to speak, saying, “Mr. Chris you have a letter that I have in my package dealing with Head Start, Can you tell me what’s going on with that?” at this time, Councilman, Paige, replied, “I had the letter at the last meeting and I was going to give to all members, but I did issue the letter for our Clerk to give to the newspaper, and Mr. Nowlin, and those that were present. Thanks to the people in the community, because I don’t know what any of you people own or have whether it’s a business, but it was people from the Community who called me, church members and other people who called me to say, they had a problem with that, they felt it was unfair that, I didn’t know that Mr. Rachal owns or family member owns a Child Care facility and he was significantly in the push to make sure the Parish did not apply for the Head Start Program and people trusted him, and they called me with that, they wanted to make sure they go on record to say it needed to be looked into. Like I told Mr. Mansour and I gave him one last month just to be sure and get this over with I been here over twenty-five years and sometimes I see justice flipped the other way and I told him I hope they don’t look the other way on this particular thing and that they do a full investigation, because Child Care Center are in competition with the Head Start program because they compete for the children, and that’s just the way I feel about it.”     

Councilman, Rachal, responded, “For the record I do not own a daycare, my wife has never owned a Daycare and ethics only goes to the spouse first thing, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Next thing is Head Start is a Grant and my daughter Day Care is out her pockets so there’s no competition, so that’s okay, let the record reflect Russell nor LaDonna Rachal owns a Day Care Center or never will own a Day Care and it will be looked into through the legal system, Thank you.”

Ms. Carolyn Roy wanted to know, is there a new Grantee for Head Start and if so, when does it starts and when does the Parish Council support ends? Parish President responded, “Carolyn, the Parish contract with the Office of Head Start ends on June 30, 2019 applications were submitted last November by those interested parties wished to operate the program, I think two but more may have been submitted, they’re being evaluated now in DC and hopefully we’ll know soon, but we have no assurances, we don’t know exactly when we’re going to know, it could be next month, it could be June 30th, I think the later it is more of a hardship it puts on our employees, and they have plans to make and we have a new school year that starts in early August, it needs to be up to somebody, we’re constantly trying to get Mrs. Metoyer to get us all the information and we really don’t have any leverage to say we need to know something, our people needs to know something. We don’t know, and we don’t know when we’ll know, the only thing I heard, was maybe we’ll know about May and that’s not a definitely maybe.” 

Councilwoman, Hoover, wanted to know who was the two agencies that applied. Parish President replied, “Save the Children they operate the Rapides Parish Head Start Program and in Arkansas and three or four other states and Pinebelt operates in the Northern part of Louisiana in LaSalle Parish, Bienville, Red River, and Jackson.”

Councilman, Paige, responded, “There are going to be some more cost factors related to that also to this Parish, for the employees they don’t pick up some unemployment this Parish would have to pay and for all the employees this agency won’t take over, such as their Comp time and other things these people have coming to them. I think Ms. Miley is working with them.” Councilwoman, Hoover replied, “Well, she’s leaving so, and Councilman Paige, replied, “I don’t know all about that.” Parish President Rick Nowlin, responded, “We have done a comparison cost for the Parish, if they would not hire any of our employees it would cost of $60,000 to $65,000 if they hire half our employees we’re looking at $30,000, 75% we’re looking at $15,000, I don’t have no guarantee but I certainly it would be wise on these other companies to look at our employees and I expect they would hire a large number of them, it’s their call, I think it will be quite difficult to run out and find sixty people in a day or something, but worse case we’re looking in a range of $60,000 to $65,000.”

Councilman, Paige, responded, “It should also be noted that when you talk about $65,000 this could be fixing people potholes and roads out there with, let’s be for real about what we’re talking about, it’s unnecessary that we go in this phase, but it has happened, and we have to deal with it.” Parish President, replied, “That’s right we’re dealing with it.”

Jr. Johnson wanted clarity about Head Start and a privately-owned Day Care, Head Start is federally funded and he wanted clarification if Head Start was federally funded. And whom ever gets it still will receive Federal funding, but it just won’t go to Natchitoches Parish Government.

Councilwoman, Hoover, wanted to know about Insurance for the Parish and it would affect the Parish when these 60 people are dropped. Councilwoman, Hoover was told by Parish President Nowlin and Human Resources Cathy Creamer it would not affect our Insurance for this year, but next year they would have to look at it again based on the employees that we have and our previous claims, but this year the rates will not change, but next year the Parish might have to get very created to keep in Compliance with regulations.

Chairman, Bedgood, then recognizes Parish Treasurer Debbie Miley

Which was present, but the reports were mailed out and put around the horseshoe for the Council.

Councilwoman, Hoover, responded, “I see that our Parish Treasurer is leaving and I was wondering, I’m just asking I don’t know and I want someone to tell me do we do an Audit for the Parish when you’re making these transactions, and it was a business and somebody left they would audit the books so is the Parish is going to audit their books when the Treasurer leaves, so the next person who comes in would know what we have.”

Parish President responds, “The Parish is not going to do a complete audit as you would think at the end of the year, the annual physical audit, we do certain things every month, reconciling all our bank statements, and checking the budgets in the accounts and checking PO’s but we have not done a complete audit.” Councilwoman, Hoover asked, “Do any of the Council members have any concerns about this, the Parish being audited, to actually see what we have before we bring someone new in, do you-all have any concerns about that?”  Councilman, Rachal, responded, “I don’t have a problem with Ms. Miley, I trust her.” Councilwoman, Hoover, replied, “We’re not talking about a person, we’re talking about an audit being done.” Councilman, Rachal, replied, “I feel she would leave us good, but to answer your question, no I don’t have a concern.” Parish President, “All of our transactions are recorded on computer.” Councilwoman, Hoover, asked Councilman de Graffenried, Chairman Bedgood, and they both didn’t have a concern. Councilwoman, Hoover, then asked Councilman Paige. Councilman Paige, responded, “Are you asking me a question, what do you want to know?” Councilwoman, replied, “Yes, I am.” Councilman, Paige, responded, “I don’t want to even go into that, if you have something on the table to vote on, I’m ready to vote on it and if not, let’s move on.”

Chairman, Bedgood then recognizes Interim Director of Planning and Zoning Mr. David Kees, Jr. Mr. Kees, begins by saying, “I apologize but my report didn’t make it in the packages, I didn’t get it out in time, but I do have a couple things, that I put on the table next to you, one of them looks like this, the reason I wanted to print this out because under Other Agenda Items letter H you would be voting on whether to extend our contract with IBTS, so I wanted to give you some numbers for the last five months I printed out the amount that we’ve taken in permit fees and the money that we have paid to IBTS for the last five months, you can see starting with February the Parish came out $5800 dollars ahead and in January we came out $16,000 dollars ahead, so over the five months average the Parish average after paying IBTS it’s fees about $10,000 per month, just for January and February we average $11,000 per month for this year, which means that if we average $4,000 dollars a month, which we’ve cleared easily in the five months with IBTS we would come out to about $5200 hundred dollars a month, and talking with Ms. Miley when we first entered into this contract she said that we would have to clear about $5,000 dollars for the Planning and Zoning Office to fund itself and these numbers shows right now we have done that. I also put this at the table, I ran through every permit that we done in 2016, 2017, and 2018 put them in this table and did hypothetically with what we would come out with 

Had we had IBTS in 2016, 2017, and 2018 and for 2016 we would have average 6100 hundred, 2017 would have been $3300 hundred, and 2018 would have been $6800 hundred a month, that we would have average, again, cleared the $5,000 dollars mark that Ms. Miley told me that we needed to do for the office of Planning and Zoning.”

Councilman, Rachal, replied, “Do you have any idea what we were clearing when we had an employee in there?”  Mr. Kees, replied, “I don’t know.” Councilman Rachal, replied, “Can you get that for us?” Mr. Kees, replied, “That probably needs to go to the Finance.” Mr. Kees, replied, “I’m just running you numbers I have access too.”

Councilman, Rachal, asked, “Would that be possible to get that at a certain point?” Mrs. Vance, replied, “Yes.”

Councilwoman, Hoover, wanted to know, “Mr. David how long will you be Interim Director for Planning and Zoning and Mr. Nowlin would be advertising for Director, How long would this going to be, I know you said you was hiring someone because there was so much work on David, being your Assistant, so now he’s doing Planning and Zoning and your Assistant and he said he couldn’t get his report out, I was just wondering is that hindering him for him doing what he needs to do?”

Parish President, replied, “Yes, it’s quite a bit, David has taken on quite a bit, and what has happened he has push some of his work upstream for me, I think, we haven’t advertised yet, we wanted to a little track record with IBTS and at the next meeting we’ll have a better comparison and maybe it might be the best interest of the Parish to continue with them on a long run basis with IBTS than to staff up and have somebody, if we use IBTS on a long term basis it’s quite possible that we could only have to collect the fees and do the permits, it would be a part time job as it is now, David could be a part and we also have involved Ms. Mims our part time receptionist.”

Councilman, Paige, asked, “Is she still working five hours a day?”

Parish President, responded, “On an average yes.” Councilman, Paige, replied, “Are you saying there’s a plan to increase her hours possibly?” Parish President, replied, “Possibly.”  There was discussion concerning Ms. Mims, that should could be the receptionist still help with Planning and Zoning, and she’s right now is helping Mr. David Kees, Jr. with Permits and things. Councilman, Paige, replied, “You’re sitting here saying he has a heavy load and she’s sitting there working five hours a day, it has to be a medium somewhere and we need to get there.” 

Chairman, Bedgood then recognizes Parish President.

Parish President stated, “I attached to my report pictures regards to Hampton Road there is some photographs to show some of the construction work that has been down. They have made a lot of progress since the first of the year.

     CAPITAL PROJECTS:

  1. Hampton Road Improvements: The project construction has been completed and the project engineer has recommended its acceptance by the Parish.  The agenda includes a resolution of acceptance.
  2. Payne Subdivision, Streets, Phase I: The state Facility Planning and Control has approved the reduction in the project scope to bring the cost of the project within the funds available at this time.  This means that Phase I is being divided into two separate projects.  The first project budge tis approximately $267,000, which amount includes the Parish match of approximately $67,000.

The plan revisions to reflect the reduction in scope were completed and submitted to the state.  The state has approved the revised plans and the project has been advertised for public bids to be opened on April 10, 2019.

Courthouse Security Improvements

The architect will be meeting with the Parish and other parties in the Courthouse on Tuesday, March 19, to review the preliminary design conceptual plan.

Payne Subdivision Sewer Improvements:  The Parish has received notice that its application for LA Community Development Block Grant funds to make major improvements to the subdivision sewer system ahs been approved.  The total amount of the Grant is $756,300 which amount covers the cost associated with the design and construction of a new terminal left station and treatment plant. The agenda includes authorization to execute the grant agreement and associated documents.

Solid Waste Scale House:  The final plans have been completed by Mr. Minturn.  Due to the uncertainty regarding the Parish solid waste operation under the new solid waste agreement, the purchase of the new building is temporarily on hold.  After the new service agreement has been executed, the Parish can move forward with the building as may be appropriate.

Parish Treasurer:  The soon-to-be vacant position of Parish Treasurer has been advertised in the media.  After the application period ends on March 22, the application will be reviewed and interviews schedule with candidates who appear to be qualified for the position.

Councilman Rachal said he has two questions. Councilman, Rachal begins to say, “Initially we had rejected the bid because the cost of the ramp, right?” Parish President, responds, “Yes.” Councilman Rachal continues, “Has that been added back on the back end and what it’s going to cost us now.” Parish President replies, “The architect for the Courthouse Security Improvements has offered to put that in if we add the money into that, but since that’s a longer-term project I suggested that we can try to keep that separately. Mr. Minturn is still trying to come up with a design that applies within budget.” Councilman, Rachal, responds, “Why do we have Mr. Minturn to do it when we have someone else to do it, I thought that was the purpose of going with the other guy, isn’t because it’s not done because Mr. Minturn is late on getting things done?” Parish President, responds, “We have gone out for bids twice and it has been over budget both times and that project was going on before and we got authorization on the other one before this one this is separate part from Courthouse security, we can asked to state to combine the two if we wanted it, but we haven’t done that yet.” Councilman, Rachal, replied, “I’m just making sure that the price of that ramp is not being added somewhere else and we not knowing about it.” Parish President, replied, “You would know about it.” Councilman, Rachal continues, “The agreement with the Solid Waste when is it going to be up?” Parish President responds, “We will be putting out the RFP’s out by the end of the month so by the end of next month we’ll have the proposals in and will ask the council to award it at the May meeting, to start in June.”

Councilman, Paige, asks, “With the design of the handicap ramp would the design of it making sure it doesn’t take away from the structure basically the historically of the building and all that, How it’s structured.” Parish President, replied, “It goes uphill We’re going to take advantage of that and running the ramp up and running by edge of Sheriff’s Office parking lot turning in is about a 9-inch increase in height to the layup to the top of the stairs to the Church street door, so it’s a very gentle slope there. The original designs were presented to the City of Natchitoches Historic Commission they approved the designs but if there’s any major changes then we would have to run it by them again.” Parish President stated, “We have a good relationship with the Chairlady Ms. Gahagan she understands you have to comply with the rules of the fire marshal and the ADA we have to do that in an architectural sensitive manner.” Councilman Paige, responds, “That’s fine, I just wanted to make sure we touch on that to let the public know.”

Councilwoman, Hoover, wanted to know was there any additional information on the Solid Waste that the Council needs to have before the May meeting and the Parish President informed her soon as his office gets the proposals in they would run them through a spreadsheet and do a comparison like before and this time we’ll have a more apples to apples comparison as to the structure of the proposals and when his Office get that in they will provide that to the Council at least a week ahead of the meeting. Parish President, quoted, “You need time to digest the information.” Councilwoman, Hoover, replied, “I do.” And Parish President, said, “Not you individually, but everybody.”

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item to adopt the minutes of the    regular meeting of the Natchitoches Parish Council held Monday, January 28, 2019.

No Minutes for adoption for February.

Council to consider correction on the November 19, 2018 Minutes. A voting section was left off the minutes.

On motion by Councilwoman Patsy Hoover, duly seconded by, Councilman Chris Paige that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby adopt the minutes of the regular meeting of the Natchitoches Parish Council held Monday, January 28, 2019 and no Minutes for adoption for February, and Council to consider correction on the November 19, 2018 Minutes. A voting section was left off the minutes.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

Chairman Bedgood stated the next item on the agenda

Appointments of Boards and Commissions.

Consider adopting a resolution confirming re- appointment/appointments to the following boards/commissions.  

Council to consider re-appointment of Mr. Mike Marbut to Fire District No. 7 Board.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session, does hereby re-appoint Mr. Mike Marbut to Fire District No. 7 Board.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige      Motion Passed

Council to consider appointment of Ms. Terri Marshall to replace Ms.Kacey Rodgers on the Parish Planning Commission.

On motion by Councilwoman Patsy Hoover, duly seconded by, Councilman Russell Rachal that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby appointment of Ms. Terri Marshall to replace Ms. Kacey Rodgers on the Parish Planning Commission.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

Council to consider re-appointment of Mr. Michael Richardson to the board of Fire District No. 4 Board.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby re-appoint Mr. Michael Richardson to the board of Fire District No. 4 Board.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige      Motion Passed

Council to consider re-appointment of Ms. Lauryn Sharplin to the Parish Tourist Commission.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by,

Councilman Chris Paige that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session, does hereby approves appointment of Ms. Lauryn Sharplin to the Parish Tourist Commission.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

First Adoption of proposed Ordinances: 

  1. Council to consider Introducing Ordinance No. _002-2019 to amend and reenact Ordinance No. 005-2018 to change the percentage of meetings a member of a Parish board or commission must attend in order to remain a member of the board or commission. The existing language in Section 1, Subsection B.3., reads as follows: “Absence from more than seventy-five (75%) percent of the regularly scheduled meetings of the board or commission in any calendar year.” The proposed ordinance would change the “seventy-five (75%) percent” to “twenty-five percent (25%). (The minutes of the Council meeting indicate the original figure was 50% but it was amended to 75% before the ordinance was adopted.

Parish President responds by saying, “Mr. Chairman my interpretation of the discussion was that it was intended for membership to attend 75% of the meetings but the way the original Ordinance was drafted it was about absences the language didn’t work out and we need to correct that.”  

Councilman Rachal states, “So this means if they miss 25% of the meetings they can come off the board?” Parish President, replies, “Yes, Sir.”

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by,

Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, Introduce Ordinance No. _002-2019 to amend and reenact Ordinance No. 005-2018 to  change the percentage of meetings a member of a Parish board or commission must attend in order to remain a member of the board or commission. The existing language in Section 1, Subsection B.3., reads as follows: “Absence from more than seventy-five (75%) percent of the regularly scheduled meetings of the board or commission in any calendar year.” The proposed ordinance would change the “seventy-five (75%) percent” to “twenty-five percent (25%). (The minutes of the Council meeting indicate the original figure was 50% but it was amended to 75% before the ordinance was adopted.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige      Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider Introducing Ordinance No. 003-2019 Budget Revisions for the Operating Budget.

The Council wanted to know what the revisions are to the Operating Budget Ms. Miley was present and. Mrs. Vance stated, “They were mailed out on Friday separately from the other packet.”

Mr. John Richmond at this time wanted to add something to the discussion that was going on, “Those to have it or don’t have it, then he asks Mrs. Vance is this about the Highway Budget Revisions? And Mrs. Vance, replied, “No, not just about yours.” Mr. Richmond, responded, “Let’s just talk about mine for right now, I’m in a jam, at the Highway Department with our Budget. The Budget is not where we’re trying to increase anything, I’m moving some things around from line items, let me give you an example: I can not get Winn Rock material on a consistent basis and it’s a large chunk of my budget, I need the ability to get something else, I’m not trying to move away from Winn Rock it’s simply unavailable; so part of that budget revision is moving that money from Winn Rock into two additional line items that would let us buy crushed concrete in lieu of Winn Rock or 3 X 5 Rip Rap in lieu of Winn Rock so we can have something to put on these roads because right now I can’t get Winn Rock and I can’t put material down and the other part of it not relating to material, has to do with moving some funds around so we can cover some of our Personnel issues for example: Does not have to do anything with Earl Townsend and his salary that we mentioned earlier but it does have to do with some unexpected retirement of a gentlemen and we’ll have to be paying for that and we have to absorb some expenses related to him, we had a employee that was deployed overseas he’s part of the Reserve and we have to maintain a spot for him but now I need to fill that spot, I got a couple of those needs that I need to get personnel on the ground to do it, the work that needs to be done. It does not increase the total amount at all of the Budget, not one cent.”

Cathy made the statement that “Lynda put folders by everyone seat and that information is supposed to be included in it, she put it around earlier today.”

Councilwoman, Hoover, replied, “That why I ask for everything to be on time, ever since I’ve been here I been asking for having your reports on-time, so we can review it.”

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilman Chris Paige that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby introduce Ordinance No. 003-2019 Budget Revisions for the Operating Budget.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item is Public Hearing:

Council to consider adopting Ordinance 001-2019 to remove Benji Colvin Road from the parish road system.

On motion by Councilman Chris Paige, duly seconded by,

Councilman Russell Rachal that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session, does hereby open the Public Hearing to hear Adoption of Ordinance No. 001-2019 to remove Benjie Colvin Road from the parish road system.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

The audience was asked if anyone was there for and comments and concerns about this road. No one was there for the road.  

Mr. Richmond responded, “Benji Colvin road is about a quarter of a mile long, and the only property owner is Benji Colvin he owns the house at the end of and owns the property on both sides coming out to Eight Mile Loop. He owns the property behind it. Mr. Colvin told me he’ll take it out the system all we had to do is to go grade it for him and fill a couple of pot holes and he will just take it up.”

Councilman Paige, asked, “This is not a through road that the public uses to go anywhere?” Mr. Richmond, replies, “Its dead end at the end of the road.” And, Councilman Russell Rachal replied, “We will also be getting a bridge out the system, also right?” Mr. Richmond responded, “We will, we will, we will be getting a bridge out the system.” Councilman Rachal, stated, “That would be a positive thing for us in the long, wouldn’t it?” Mr. Richmond, responded, “That is an understatement.”

On motion by Councilman Chris Paige, duly seconded by,

Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session, does hereby close the Public Hearing to hear Adoption of Ordinance No. 001-2019 to remove Benjie Colvin Road from the parish road system.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood                    Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item Action on Proposed Ordinances:

Council to consider adopting Ordinance 001-2019 to remove Benjie   Colvin Road from the parish road system.

On motion by Councilman Chris Paige, duly seconded by,

Councilman Russell Rachal that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby open the Public Hearing to hear Adoption of Ordinance No. 001-2019 to remove Benjie Colvin Road from the parish road system.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Resolutions:

Council to consider April 21-27 as “Drive the Jefferson Highway” week in Natchitoches to coincide with the International conference of the Jefferson Highway Association to be held in Natchitoches April 24-27, 2019.

Parish President, responded, “This was requested by the Natchitoches Parish Tourist Commission they are working with the Event Center in Natchitoches for a place for that association can have their conference in Natchitoches, this is being done in Cities all along the route and they basically say drive the Jefferson Highway instead of driving the Interstate.

On motion by Councilman Chris Paige, duly seconded by, Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby adopt April 21-27 as “Drive the Jefferson Highway” week in Natchitoches to coincide with the International conference of the Jefferson Highway Association to be held in Natchitoches April 24-27, 2019.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood                    Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Other Agenda Items:

Council to consider awarding the bids for Silty Clay Soil and Grader Blades.

           Grader Blades bidders:

  1. Valk manufacturing Company
  2. Scott Equipment Company
  3. Doggett
  4. Wear Parts and Equipment Company

           Silty Clay Soil:

  1. FFT Trucking Services, LLC

Mr. Richmond recommend the low bidder for each Valk Manufacturing Company for Grader Blades and Silty Clay Soil for FFT Trucking Services, LLC.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilman Rodney Bedgood that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session, does hereby awards Grader Blades to Valk Manufacturing and Silty Clay Soil to FFT Trucking Services, LLC

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige      Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider authorizing the Parish President to continue temporary operation of the Parish Head Start program on a month to month basis for a period up to three months beyond the end of the present grant period, contingent upon confirmation from the Office of Head Start that expenses incurred by the Parish in connection with the temporary operation of the program during the transition to the new HS grantee would be reimbursed by the Office of Head Start.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session authorize the Parish President to continue temporary operation of the Parish Head Start program on a month to month basis for a period up to three months beyond the end of the present grant period, contingent upon confirmation from the Office of Head Start that expenses incurred by the Parish in connection with the temporary operation of the program during the transition to the new HS grantee would be reimbursed by the Office of Head Start.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Abstain:   Councilman Paige           Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider authorizing Parish President to provide written notice to Schindler Elevator Corporation that the Parish desires to terminate the agreement between Schindler and the Parish effective  

August 3, 2019, and to solicit proposals for elevator maintenance services.

Parish President responded, “We have a multi-annual agreement with Schindler now they have been our provider for five years in August and we would like to solicit proposals we contacted some other people like the Natchitoches parish hospital people who are dealing with other elevator companies, taking proposals and awarding new contracts. You must provide a written notice 90 days out that we would like the contract to terminate. We have a list of concerns, that I don’t need to go into right now, it’s called the “Schindler List”. If we don’t do this their contract will automatically renew.”

Councilman Paige, replies, “So you’re with the mindset of thinking that we may get someone better or cheaper or better quality or whatever?”

Councilman Rachal, stated, “You’re going to notify them over the phone immediately that we’re going to cease with them immediately on the 3rd.”  Parish President, replied, “August 3rd is the termination date of the existing contract if you don’t do nothing it’s going to renew.”

Councilman Rachal wanted to know if he was going to wait until August 3rd, Parish President replied, “No we’re going to start now, we have already begin putting RFP’s together.”

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilman Rodney Bedgood that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby authorize Parish President to provide written notice to Schindler Elevator Corporation that the Parish desires to terminate the agreement between Schindler and the Parish effective August 3, 2019, and to solicit proposals for elevator maintenance services.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Absent:    Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige      Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider authorizing the Parish  President to sign and execute an agreement with Hope for Paws for the reimbursement of expenses incurred through the Hope for Paws spay and neuter program.

There will be $5,000 coming to each one of these with a total of $10,000 coming from the Health Unit.

Council to consider authorizing the Parish President to sign and execute an agreement with the Natchitoches Humane Society for the reimbursement of expenses incurred through the Humane Society’s spay and neuter program.

On motion for both by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilman Doug de Graffenried that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby authorize the Parish President to sign and execute an agreement with Hope for Paws for the reimbursement of expenses incurred through the Hope for Paws spay and neuter program and authorize Parish President to sign and execute an agreement with the Natchitoches Humane Society for the reimbursement of expenses incurred through the Humane Society’s spay and neuter program.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Absent:    Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige           Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider approving the process to begin to evaluate the option of cost sharing with the residents of Beau Vista Road with the Parish of Natchitoches. This was taken off due to needing more information for the Parish Attorney, but some residents were there to share their concerns and willingness to start the process.

For representative was Mr. Durwood Duke he begins by saying, “I’ve been a resident of Beau Vista Road since 1972 shortly after that time to the lower 70’s I came to address about putting us in the Road System and they said we was. I was out of the Parish about 8 years but returned in the last 20 years and there has been no maintenance we the resident will come together and pay for the road to be fixed, I believe Mr. Perot has talked with someone of you about cost sharing that’s what we’re interested in and we want to know what’s expected of us in the cost sharing, where the cost sharing is concerned, we aware of the road conditions in this Parish, we travel them all just like everybody else, but all at the same time  all we’re asking for is fairness.” The Parish President at this time informed the Council this item doesn’t require a vote, so the Council and Parish President, and Mr. Richmond went to discussion about the Cost Sharing for these residents but they still have to find out the cost and how much the cost sharing will be and they have to determine if they have enough funds in the budget to do it, then it will come in front of the Council for approval. Mr. Scooter Perot wanted to speak he is also a resident on that road and he didn’t know about the cost sharing process until some friends were involved in the process. Mr. Perot went out and got bids from three different places he didn’t know if the Council needed that or they were going to do something separate. Mr. Perot was informed Mr. Richmond would take them, those would be used.  Mr. Perot, also stated, “Every company we talked to the biggest expense is moving the equipment, so Kayla drive is right next to us, the next road over, so it will be helpful since that project is already there, but they are a little ahead of us, but it will take us tomorrow and we’ll have the money, that’s not an issue, there are six residents on that road.”

Councilman Paige and Mr. Richmond was also talking, and Councilman Paige, said, “It’s very admirable, and the body who sits here is glad  that these residents would come forth and is willing to do this type of project, and anybody who sits here and wants to turn death ear to any residents who lives here and willing to go into their pockets to help this Parish to have better roads would be less than foolish to welcome you and others that is out there, we need to try to an assistance them.”

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider approving audit engagement agreement for 2018 Audit.

Everyone was wondering who was going to speak on this item, and Mrs. Vance stated their office did receive a letter, but no one knew what was on the letter, Mrs. Vance stated, “I can go over to the office and get it.”

The Parish President asked the Chairman could continue with the Agenda until Mrs. Vance gets back with the letter from the Auditors.

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider authorizing the Parish President to sign and execute a 90-day extension to the current agreement with Institute of Building Technology and Safety (IBTS) to be the Parish’s Building Official of record and to provide permitting and inspection services.

Councilman Rachal wanted to know when does the agreement ends, and Mr. Kees, told him at the end of this month, the Parish had a six months agreement with them. Councilman Paige, replied, “I would be very interesting to see how much money that we’re paying these group compared to what we were paying an individual, I really want to see that.”

Parish President, replied, “We have to make sure David gets this on the Agenda with the comparison.” Councilman Rachal, replied, “We’re down to the straw on this deal before now, I make a motion that we table it until next month, until we get what we asked for.” Councilman Paige responded, “We got to, personally, we got to continue on with what we’re doing before we held up these realtors, before they come up here like gang busters saying, they can’t do permits or anything, I think we need to do something, that was terrible and that’s not a way to run Parish business saying these people can’t get a permit.”

Councilman, Rachal responded, “I’ll withdraw my motion to table it and I’ll offer it.”

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by,

Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session authorize the Parish President to sign and execute a 90-day extension to the current agreement with Institute of Building Technology and Safety (IBTS) to be the Parish’s Building Official of record and to provide permitting and inspection services.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige           Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council and Attorney to discuss ROV appointment.

Mr. Mansour, Parish Attorney, begins, “We received the opinion of the Attorney General last week and a copy of the opinion should have been provided to all members of the Council and to the Council President to review, as you recall in the initial, actually my first meeting as legal Council there was a discussion about the appointment of the Registrar Voters to fill the position that was vacated by the retirement of the Registrar of Voters, that person is being filled by the Interim Deputy that is currently acting as the Registrar of Voters. There was a question that was presented to the District Attorney’s Office who had the authority and decision on the replacement of the Registrar of Voters for Natchitoches Parish the District Attorney’s Office request an opinion from the Attorney Generals they addressed several questions and render an opinion to the District Attorney on their evaluation and experience in dealing with the question of replacing the Registrar of Voters in the Parishes. I contacted Mr. Wells, who is the Assistant Attorney General who represents the Registrar of Voters across the State, had some discussion with him and ultimately, I submitted a list of questions. Have you-all been provided with a copy. In the letter you can see the questions that was addressed for the opinion and the AG, Attorney General was issued an opinion, I guess in summary the Attorney Generals Office confirmed the opinion of the District Attorney Office is the Parish Council has the authority to select the candidate or replacement for the Registrar of Voters in Natchitoches Parish. I understand prior to the beginning as legal Counsel that there was some steps that had been taken in order to begin the process of the Registrar of Voters and in accordance with the Statute, I think that in my opinion that the Council should move forward and to advertise to publicize the opening and seek application and go throgh the process on the selection of the placement. I can give you specifics, that in the letter as needed.”   

Councilwoman, Hoover, replied, “Correct me if I’m wrong the President does not have any say at all in the process?” Mr. Mansour, “The Statute the Council has the decision, but the Council can vote for his input or come up with their own process, the President is not specifically excluded, he’s not prohibited should I say, but it’s the decision of the Council as whether the President participate, it’s at the pleasure of the Council.”

Councilman Paige, responds, “It could be a working relationship if possible.  Mr. Mansour, I’ve mentioned to the chair, Mr. Bedgood if possibly to be fair when we start all over have the Chairperson select another Council member and Ms. Sheryl because you can’t have three Councilmembers involved in this process for them to do the interview and I had some other people called and all the questions you asked before needs to be completely thrown out because they’re prepared for those questions, I think that would be a fair way to do it and with that they bring in a recommendation to the full Council so they can interview the individuals so it wouldn’t be so public.”

Mr. Mansour, replied, “I think you can do that, the Statue does provide that appointment the Governing Authority shall offer an interview to each applicant that meet qualifications, so if the applicants wants to meet with the entire Council rather than the committee, that’s an option.”

Councilman Paige, “See that’s where we had the problem before possibly going into an Executive Session with these people than have all their public interview in public.”

The Council was discussing about going into an Executive Session if you could or couldn’t and if the Council votes to go into an Executive Session you can go into Executive Session not to interview, but to discuss the character and competence of the individual. In a body of five it takes four positive votes to enter an Executive Session.

Councilman Rachal, stated, “As far as the option of picking two and o and a random person, I didn’t see that in this letter, it said entire Council, which will be doing the selection, so I wouldn’t be up on taking someone else word on what they heard, unless I heard that.”

Mr. Mansour, replied, “I think it’s a decision that the Council can make on the process that the process that the Council wants to follow to interview the candidates.”

The Chairman, spoke, “As the Chairman, just let me say this, but when it says Council I feel that all of us should be in the process, that’s just me, I don’t want to make the decision me and one more or two of them, I think all of us should be in the selection.”

Councilman Paige, replied, “I think we all would be in the selection, but when you’re talking to the individual and they’re standing there, it’s certain questions that are asked automatically you can’t ask those anyway, but those people have other jobs, and they’re applying It’s just not good to have individual stand there seeking a job and they work somewhere else, it’s just not, I mean in my prospective, that’s all I’m simply saying, my God.”

Mrs. Carolyn Roy, “They didn’t have not expectancy of privacy, is that right?”

Councilman, Paige had started to answer, and he said just let me hush, and Councilwoman, Hoover, responded, “No, Chris, it’s not about hushing the Council finding out exactly what we need to do and how we need to do it as a body and if you have something to say, say it, we have the attorney here to tell us what we can do and what we can’t do, but we going to have to make a decision because this has gone on too long, and we going to have to make a decision.”  Councilman Paige went on to tell about how it was done in the past, to explain everyone is still in the process, but maybe you weren’t on the questioning of the individual. Councilwoman, Hoover, asked Councilman de Graffenried what he had to say, and his response was, “I’m just listening right now, but whatever we do we need to stop and write an Ordinance, put our procedures in an Ordinance, so if it happens again we’ll know how to proceed.”

The Parish President wanted to speak, “Let me just recommend something, whatever you do can you wait to after the March 30, election, but correct me if I’m wrong Mr. Mansour, if you have two or less Councilmembers, like Mr. Paige stated you can have a committee, it’s a Council decision and another thing about starting over, Sheryl was the only one involved in the interviews before, I think you should take the original list of applicants been waiting a long time instead starting over, it’s your decision.” Mr. Mansour, replied, “Under the

Statue that this Council in our opinion has the authority to do the process, that they should do the process, the Statue is clear rather it’s been done in the past, I don’t want to cut out an applicant from applying because they didn’t understand this process which had taken place.” Councilman, Rachal, replied, “You’re talking about the top nine that was recommended before?” Mr. Mansour, replied, “That’s right.” Councilman Rachal begins reading off the qualifications and he said, I should be I don’t think it should be this type of job, because of this, it shouldn’t matter, if it’s set forth by the Secretary of State then we need to stick with it.”

Councilman de Graffenried, asked, “So we’re agreeing that two Council members and Sheryl are going to do it, Councilman, Rachal, replied, “I’m not agreeing to that, if I’m going to cast my vote on somebody, I want to be on the interview.” Councilman, de Graffenried, said, “Ok.”

Councilman, Rachal, replied, “I think we should have a meeting to discuss how we going to handle this before the next meeting. I will agree on that.” Mr. Mansour, replied, “I don’t think you necessarily have to decide tonight on the process, but you-all need to be thinking of a process.” Councilman, Paige, if someone come up with one way and another comes up with another way, we just vote on it three to two.”

Councilman Rachal, replied, “I understand what you’re saying is it possible that we can meet open forum legally to discuss how we can come up with a plan and be ready for next month.”

Chairman Bedgood, wanted to know if it could wait until after the March election and everyone was saying it would be after that anyway. The meeting is not until next month and the election would be over at the end of the month. The Parish Attorney stated, “No matter of the process you have to advertise it and to solicitate the applications and to make a decision on the process doesn’t stop the advertising of the position.”

Councilwoman Hoover, asked, “You think we need to start the process now? Parish Attorney, responded, “That’s you-all decision.”

Chairman, Bedgood, stated, “I think we need to go ahead and start it.”

Councilman de Graffenried, asked, “How long does the process stays opened?” Parish President, responded, “I do mine three weeks, you do what you want.” Cathy Creamer was discussing the specifics of the advertisement and that she couldn’t remember off hand, it’s been a while since she did it, but she would look at it and get with Sheryl and then they would decide on the advertisement and we can decide on the number of publications.  Councilman, Paige, “When I said the Chairperson you can designate I don’t care to be on the interview, you can designate you or Mr. Rachal or Ms. Hoover, I don’t care, and Sheryl, I don’t have to be there, I don’t need to be there, I trust you guys to say this is the best individual and we deal with it, or you want to select two however you want to do it, we can choose from it, something to work with, I don’t care.” Councilman Doug de Graffenried agreed with Councilman Paige and said that was a good idea to let Councilwoman Hoover and Councilman Rachal to be on the interview Committee along with Sheryl, the Parish Clerk and then Cathy, HR. So, the committee will be Councilman Rachal, Councilwoman, Hoover, Parish Council Clerk, and HR and they would have to bring back the top 3 candidates to the Council for approval.

On motion for both by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by, Councilman Rodney Bedgood that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby approves the interview Committee of Councilman Russell Rachal, Councilwoman, Patsy Hoover, Parish Council Clerk, Sheryl Frederick, and HR, Cathy Creamer to interview candidates and bring back the top 3 applicants to the Council for their choosing.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Paige           Motion Passed

Cathy Creamer and Sheryl Frederick would be working hand to hand

And Councilman de Graffenried, asked, “Would the candidates that did the applications and interviews we need to write them a letter explaining the new process it wasn’t because we didn’t have unqualified candidates it’s because of the new process. And it was said, Sheryl get that letter ready.” 

Katherine Woodard Holden wanted to be clear on the process now, she asked, “I just want to be clear now on the process, I just want to make it clear, Do I need to re-apply on an application again or you would just pull the application that was submitted?” All agreed that we need to start a new process, and this includes a new application.  Ms. Cathy Creamer, stated, “Ms. Holden had turned in some letters of recommendations and things you might not have copies of, if she request I can pull those copies, so she wouldn’t have to do that part or anybody who wishes to re-apply they can request it in writing to me and I’ll pull their original letter, resumes, for them.”

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to approve Head Start COLA for 1.77 total is $14,176.

Parish President responded, “Federal money designated for the employees, if you don’t spend it for the COLA you have to find something else to spend it on, it was intended for the employees and I rather give it to the employees.”

Councilman Rachal, asked, “I don’t have any problem with this but in an event if these employees are not rehired will that be a cost to us?” Everyone said no.

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by,

Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session approves the HEAD START COLA for 1.77 percent to the Head Start employees totaling $14,176 dollars.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Abstain:   Councilman Paige           Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider a Resolution authorizing the Parish President to execute the certificate of substantial completion for construction of the Hampton Road Improvement Project completed by W.L. Bass Construction, Inc.

Councilman Rachal asked, “Is this saying it’s costing us more than we agreed?” Parish President responds, “They included it the resolution for a change order number 3. During the construction in February we uncovered some real bad spots in the subbase and we had to use a little extra material, they had to muck out all the old bad stuff and put more rock in it, the contract had some things in the contract with fixed price and certain with fix price per unit we used more stone, then we ended up with a higher portion, that being a little higher, the mid increase it about $10,000 or so, like .9 percent out of a $1,000,0000 or so.”

Councilman Paige, replied, “That comes from the Parish?” Parish President, replied, “Yes, that comes from us anything over the $1,350,924.45.”

Parish President, responds, “It’s certain things you can’t predict, we don’t have x-ray vision.” The Parish President and Councilman Rachal and Mr. John Richmond had a deep discussion on this item.

Relatively to the end of the discussion the following action was taken.

On motion by Councilman Chris Paige, duly seconded by, Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby approve the Resolution authorizing the Parish President to execute the certificate of substantial completion for construction of the Hampton Road Improvement Project completed by W.L. Bass Construction, Inc.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood                    Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Council to consider authorizing the Parish President to sign and execute an LCDBG agreement in the amount of $756,300 for sewer renovation in Payne Subdivision.

On motion by Councilman Chris Paige, duly seconded by,

Councilman Russell Rachal that the Natchitoches Parish Council,

in regular and legal session, does hereby authorize the Parish President to sign and execute an LCDBG agreement in the amount of $756,300 for sewer renovation in Payne Subdivision.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood                    Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

At time they must complete the discussion on the Council to consider approving audit engagement agreement for 2018 audit.

Parish President begins, “This is for hiring the professional services of our auditors.” Councilman de Graffenried, asked, “Do you want to explain the difference between an agreed upon procedures and an Audit?” Parish President, responds, “NO.” Councilman de Graffenried, “Do you want me to explain between an agreed upon procedure and an audit report? We’re not looking at numbers, you’re looking at how you’re handling your money, they’re not looking at numbers and this amount money for agreed upon procedures for the budget as large as the Parish budget, they’re doing this, just flipping through, looks good to me. How long have they been doing the audit for the Parish? In the real-world business change auditors about every ten years, so I’m suggesting stoutly we need to decide what we’re wanting to do, if we’re going to have an audit, it’s going to cost way more than $5,000 dollars. Do we want to have an Agreed Upon Procedure, do we want to have Cunningham do it? Linda do you want to comment? Linda’s leaving.” but she’s on the phone trying to get the Treasurer, Debbie Miley.

Cathy Creamer, responded, “We do a complete audit and it costs more than $5,000 it’s around $50,000, I don’t know what that letter is saying, before you.” Doug de Graffenried, “That’s why, do we have the right piece of paper? I see an estimated cost between $3,000 to $5,000, I have not had time to read it all.”

Councilman Paige and Councilwoman Hoover wanted to table this until they have all the information in front of them, but Councilman, Paige, said, “We do need to hear what they are coming back with”

There was more discussion on this item, the Annual Audit is due by June 30 and we’re required by law to turn it in to the Legislative Auditor. A question was asked of Ms. Creamer to know if it’s budget in for an Audit. Ms. Creamer responds, “I’m not privileged to that information at this present time. I don’t have anything personally”

Councilwoman Hoover wanted to know where’s the enema Treasurer, but she was trying to say interim, everyone had a laugh over that. Councilman de Graffenried, “Asked so it’s their per diem rate that is between $3000 -$5,000?

Parish President, “Mr. Chairman, I just talked the Treasurer, she said this letter covers the review of the procedures that we have adopted last year the Legislative Auditor every year or so come out with new procedures and that what this is. The audit is much more in your budget each part is charged to each of the different funds and we would like to start now, but our next meeting is April 15 and we can table it until we have more information.” Councilman Doug de Graffenried, asked, “Can you-all get it done in that length of time?” Lynda Vance replied, “They’re already asking for information. We’re going to have to ask for a special meeting they cannot do that amount of work in that short length of time.”

Relatively to all the discussion on this item the following was decided upon.

On motion by Councilwoman Patsy Hoover, duly seconded by, Councilman Chris Paige that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby table the audit engagement agreement for 2018 Audit.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood         Motion Passed

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Visitors for Non-Agenda Items. (3 minutes)

James Dupree with Fire District Number 4 wanted to discuss with the Council about surplus an old Fire Truck and donating it to the Rapides Parish Fire District No. 18 this was an agenda item, but more investigation by the Parish attorney before Council can vote on it.

Mr. John Hodgeson wanted to discuss Pardee Road which was submitted on a Capital Outlay application, and Parish President informed everyone this road wasn’t chosen, but Mr. Hodgeson said he made some calls to Baton Rouge and he receive different information, but he will be giving the names of the ladies who he has been talking with to Mr. Richmond and Parish President Nowlin.

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

Executive Session to discuss a pending litigation of Jacquekin Pier vs. Parish of Natchitoches in the 10 judicial Court.

On Motion by Councilman Doug de Graffenried, duly seconded, by Councilwoman Patsy Hoover that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session does hereby enters in an Executive Session.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

The meeting was back in session and it was decided that we’ll decline the settlement and defend the case in Court.

On Motion by Councilman Russell Rachal duly seconded, by Councilman Rodney Bedgood that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session does hereby decline the settlement and defend the case in Court.

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Nayes:     Councilwoman Hoover

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Executive Session:  To discuss a pending litigation of Jacquekin Pier vs. Parish of Natchitoches in the 10 judicial Court.

Chairman, Bedgood stated the next item

On motion by Councilman Russell Rachal, duly seconded by Councilman Doug de Graffenried, that the Natchitoches Parish Council, in regular and legal session, does hereby adjourn.                  

On a roll call vote, the vote thereon was as follows:

Ayes:      Councilman Rachal

Ayes:      Councilman de Graffenried

Ayes:      Councilman Bedgood

Ayes:      Councilman Paige

Ayes:      Councilwoman Hoover            Motion Passed

 Since there was no other business the meeting was adjourned.