Gov. Bobby Jindal today nominated Department of Natural Resources Secretary Scott Angelle to serve as interim lieutenant governor after Mitch Landrieu becomes mayor of New Orleans May 3. Angelle, a Democrat who has toyed with the idea of switching parties, will have to be confirmed by a majority vote of the House and Senate before he can assume the post. At that time, he will step down temporarily from DNR but will continue in his current part-time role as legislative liaison for the governor’s office.
Landrieu’s permanent replacement will be chosen by voters in a special election Oct. 2; if necessary, a runoff election would take place in November. Angelle has agreed not to run for the statewide office, which the governor said was a condition for any nominee.
The interim appointment comes at a time when Jindal is proposing to abolish the position of lieutenant governor, which would require a constitutional amendment and a 2/3 vote of both houses of the Legislature. If he’s successful, voters would have the final say on the abolishment this fall, at the same time they go to the booth to elect Landrieu’s replacement.
The governor has named Robert Harper as acting secretary of DNR. Angelle plans to return to the agency once his tenure as lieutenant governor is over. Harper currently serves as undersecretary at DNR.
In other breaking DNR news, an attorney today filed a writ against the agency, demanding that it turn over all documents it has regarding the purchase of generators after Hurricane Gustav, according to Baton Rouge’s Daily Report. “Stephen Babcock’s filing today is related to a suit he filed last year on behalf of Generator Supercenter, which has offices in Baton Rouge. According to the suit, the state had a contract to buy 68 generators after the hurricane from Generator Supercenter,” notes Daily Report. Babcock contends the state is refusing to pay $3.2 million for generators it delivered and claims DNR has turned over less than 10 e-mails regarding the generator purchases. He charges the agency with “hiding behind feigned confusion” to avoid releasing embarrassing correspondence.
JUNE 17 If anyone ever wonders why Saints fans hate Atlanta with a capital H, here's a good indication. Radio "professionals" at an Atlanta station created an entire segment around making fun of former Saints player Steve Gleason, who is now paralyzed by ALS. Listen, nobody's ever accused DJs of being rocket scientists. But how could someone think it is amusing to pretend to ask a man with a degenerative, fatal disease if he will be alive next week? The DJs have been fired, and are now whining about how gutless their former bosses are. Wow.
JUNE 18 Here's the latest from the Advocate on the fatal hit-and-run accident allegedly involving the president of the Livingston Parish School Board. He's accused by police of hitting a 21-year-old man on a highway early Sunday and driving away. The man died at a hospital later. On Monday, police seized the president's truck and towed it away. But he's available for board meetings: apparently a $500 bond is sufficient for this type of thing over in St. Helena Parish.
JUNE 18 Former broadcast journalist Griffin Scott has posted this plea on his blog for financial assistance from his readers. Scott, who says he was fired after he wrote something fairly innocuous (for Facebook) on his wall, is suing a media giant for his job back. He's framed himself as David going after a bloated media giant, and he's probably not far off.
JUNE 18 Here's a fairly absurd column posted on DIG Magazine about the completely absurd practice of naming killer storms. Tornadoes don't have names. Blizzards don't have names. But hurricanes do, and there's a big process to bestow them, Jacques Cormery writes. He's right about the crazy assemblage of names -- this year, there's everything from Tanya to Humberto -- and his idea that we don't waste good names on killer storms is a good one.
JUNE 17 Political columnist John Maginnis has some advice for Louisiana Republicans: grow up. After the schism that occurred in this past session - fiscal hawks teaming up with Democrats to spank the Republican "majority" and hand Gov. Jindal his, er, aspirations for continued solon control -- they need to figure out how to get along with each other, Maginnis writes.
JUNE 17 Here's the Picayune's obit story for Dorothy 'Miss Dot' Domilise, the lady who made poboys at the uptown restaurant that bears her name. Miss Dot moved to New Orleans during World War II, where she met and married her husband Sam. When she passed away Friday she was 90, and had spent more than 60 of those years working at the restaurant on Annunciation Street.
JUNE 17 This editorial in the Advocate speaks in favor of the consent decrees that have federal judges overseeing police operations and the sheriff's parish prison in New Orleans. Mayor Landrieu and Sheriff Gusman can't get along, so outside forces, like the Inspector General and the judges, are needed to make sure things run right, the editorial opines.
JUNE 18 Here's a post from Manny Schewitz on Forward Progressives that is good for a chuckle. Manny had an epiphany back in November, and is sharing it with us today: he believes that Fox "News" is killing the GOP by pandering to right wing nuts. Now, don't get it twisted: Manny's not broke up about it. He says he enjoys watching the downward spiral with a shot of whiskey and "a schadenfreude chaser."
Frank’s Casing Crew, now doing business as Frank’s International, will make its final appearance on ABiz’s list of the Top 50 Privately Held Companies in Acadiana this year, and once again, it will likely be at the top with more than $1 billion in annual revenues. The 75-year-old company specializing in tubular fabrication and installation services to the oil and gas industry plans to go public this year.
The defeat, or rather highjacking of House Bill 420 in the final days of this year's Legislative Session, say Reps. Vincent Pierre and Terry Landry, is the result of the propaganda spread by one unidentified local media outlet and an unnamed former state Representative, but nothing to do with the original legislation's lack of checks, balances or details.
He’s a singer. A songwriter. A piano man. A family man. He’s even got his own Wikipedia entry. He’s David Egan. And he knows ancient secrets about the monolithic stones of Stonehenge that he’s not willing to share.