Lafayette

Jun 7, 2013 7:10 PM by Allison Bourne-Vanneck

Holy Rosary Debate Continues

The "Holy Rosary bill" may be dead, but Acadiana representatives aren't giving up the fight.

The bill's sponsors are still fired up, after the bill, which would have set up funding to restore Holy Rosary died in session.

In the final hours of session, the House refused to debate a Senate-amended version of Representative Vincent Pierre's House Hill 420."

The amendment proposed by Senator Page Cortez, and approved by the Senate---took Holy Rosary out of the bill.

State Senators say there was neither enough transparency nor oversight for the Holy Rosary funding. But the bill's sponsors strongly dispute that.

"And it will be redeveloped and it will be revitalized. It's going to happen...In spite of all the tricks and the tactics that are played," Democrat Representative Terry Landry said.

Representatives Terry Landry and Vincent Pierre blame politics for failure of a bill to provide funding for Holy Rosary...Calling out not only the Acadiana senators who effectively killed the bill, but also critics like Bruce Conque at the chamber of commerce, who questioned the proposal.

"This is the plan, Bruce Conque," Representative Landry said holding up a binder. "This is the plan," he said.

"We've provided them with a plan, we provided them with all the instruments that they need to recognize that this is a good venture," Democrat Representative Vincent Pierre said.

Senator Page Cortez says there were too many unanswered questions about the bill.

"I was never made aware as to what the total cost of the construction to totally redevelop Holy Rosary was. That's the first thing. The second was, I didn't know if there was going to be a plan for on-going perpetual maintenance...If there was going to be a plan for occupancy of the building," Republican Senator Page Cortez said.

Representatives Terry Landry and Vincent Pierre said they haven't given up on legislation to renovate Holy Rosary. They said they plan to bring the bill up next session.

"We hope that the parties involved on both sides Senate and state Representatives, will both understand and hopefully work with us and design a plan that will be best for this city," Representative Pierre said.

Bruce Conque with the Chamber of Commerce declined an interview at today's news conference. He later sent KATC a statement, in which the Chamber pledges support for the Holy Rosary institute and efforts to restore the historic building. But Conque tells us the Chamber lobbied against the legislation, because the Holy Rosary funding, would have taken money away from the Cajundome.

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