Home Rule Charter could be fixed through ordinance, will not require re-vote

Local

LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Tuesday’s Lafayette City-Parish Council meeting lasted 7 hours.
The big topic on the agenda was: What’s next for the Home Rule Charter Amendment that voters approved in December. 

Late Tuesday night, the City-Parish Council introduced an ordinance that calls for a technical correction to the Home Rule Charter Amendment:

INTRODUCTORY ORDINANCES:

48. O-041-2019 An ordinance of the Lafayette City-Parish Council amending Ordinance No. O-210-2018 of the Lafayette City-Parish Council and correct certain precinct designations and descriptions. (Jay Castille)

49. O-042-2019 An ordinance of the Lafayette City-Parish Council reapportioning the Lafayette City Council Districts and the Lafayette Parish Council Districts specified in the amended Home Rule Charter ratified by the voters of Lafayette Parish on December 8, 2018 and setting forth a new reapportionment plan describing each City Council District and Parish Council District, as reapportioned. (Jay Castille)

The ordinance would fix the precinct boundaries for the Lafayette City Council, meaning a new election would not be necessary.

Before that vote even took place however, Council Members an residents alike exchanged heated opinions, on whether the Council would seek an opinion from the Louisiana Attorney General, on the clerical errors made in the Home Rule Charter.

That proposal eventually failed.

“If the resolution fails tonight, Mr. Robideuax are you inclined to ask for the opinion?,” questioned Jay Castille, Lafayette City-Parish Councilman.

“I haven’t decided yet,” responded Mayor-President Robideaux.

“Everybody voted on the right precinct. Fix the charter, split, don’t split, they voted the right way, their vote counts,” said Kevin Naquin, Lafayette City-Parish Councilman.

“The reality, is let’s make sure that democracy works,” said Pat Lewis, Lafayette City-Parish Councilman.

“People y’all see what this is, and that’s okay, because that’s what it is. And that’s why they call it politics,” said Kenneth Boudreaux.

LCG’s Legal Department has determined the changes in the precinct and district lines can be made by ordinance.
It would also be cheaper, as another election would cost nearly $100,000 according to the Registrar of Voters.

“They (AG’s Office) are lawyers, just like we are lawyers. They do not go to some magical law school, that gives them a guarantee that they are always 100% right, just like I have no guarantee that my legal opinion, is 100% right. So it is just like a doctor’s second opinion,” said Paul Escott, Lafayette City-Parish Attorney.

The ordinance that would make those corrections in the Home Rule Charter, will go for a final vote in 2 weeks.
It will then be turned over to the Lafayette Parish Registrar of Voters.

So it appears a re-vote will not be necessary after all.

On Wednesday, an official with the Mayor-President’s Administration told News 10, Robideaux will most likely not request an opinion from the Attorney General at this point.

However, sources tell News 10 that other local organizations, could request that second opinion from AG Jeff Landry.
 

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