YOUNGSVILLE, La. (KLFY) — A Youngsville City Council seat will remain open for now after the council voted to wait to decide who will replace former councilwoman Kayla Reaux.
The investigation into Youngsville Police Chief Rickey Boudreaux is also on pause, as the city council also voted to push hiring a law firm to conduct the investigation to the next meeting.
“I was a little disappointed,” Youngsville Mayor Ken Ritter said. “I was hoping that position would be filled this evening. With that position being filled this evening, it allows us to have more collaborative conversation with the full council. After hearing some of their concerns, I do agree with them somewhat that it does deserve more time.”
Ultimately, the city council voted to wait to fill Reaux’s seat, as they want more time to review all 11 applicants.
Lindy Bolgiano was the only councilmember who was ready to decide.
“We’re not all going to agree on the same things,” Bolgiano said. “I just felt tonight there was more than enough qualified candidates and some overqualified candidates that the decision could be made tonight.”
The council has until April 25 to make the appointment during a special meeting. If they don’t choose someone to fill Reaux’s position, the governor will appoint a new council member.
“I have no doubt they will fulfill their responsibility and do it in time before the governor needs to step in,” Ritter said.
The council also discussed hiring a law firm to begin the investigation into the police chief. The city attorney said he’d like more time to look at potential firms, as the Easter holidays slowed progress.
Meanwhile, the former city attorney again brought up concerns that the city council does not have the authority to begin an investigation under the Lawrason Act.
The Lawrason Act is the state law that governs operations of most of the incorporated municipalities in Louisiana.
“Ultimately, I see this issue as landing before a judge to make a judgment,” Ritter said. “I believe the sooner we can get there, the better. I would have preferred that the council directed us this evening to seek a declaratory action and start that process. That doesn’t remove their ability to do any type of investigation, but what that declaratory action would do is give us a judgment from a judge on whether or not this is within the council’s pursue to move forward with an investigation.”
The city attorney will present more law firms for consideration at at the next council meeting.
“Ultimately, the sooner we can bring resolution to it I think is in the best interests of the members of our community that we’re fortunate to represent,” Ritter said.
The city council did vote to set a special election in October to permanently replace Reaux.