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Former LCG employees start PAC to support council split

Posted at 5:43 PM, Sep 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-14 10:11:37-04

LAFAYETTE — Two former Lafayette Consolidated Government employees have formed a political-action committee to support a split of the city-parish council.

Carlee Alm-Labar, the PAC’s chairperson, and Kevin Blanchard, its treasurer, filed a statement of organization for the “Fix the Charter PAC” on Aug. 24, campaign finance records show. Both previously worked for LCG and have been vocal supporters of the effort to split the Lafayette City-Parish Council in two.

Kevin Blanchard
Kevin Blanchard, courtesy Southern Lifestyle Development

“This is a bipartisan effort to just try to fix the underlying issue in our current form of government, which basically we don’t have fair representation,” Blanchard told KATC on Thursday.

Blanchard said about 120 volunteers have joined the PAC’s efforts.

Will Kellner, a Lafayette attorney with Liskow and Lewis, is listed as the organization’s secretary.

Blanchard said the PAC will raise funds to help drum up voter support for the council split.

Blanchard pointed to recent elections in Lafayette Parish — like the failed library tax earlier this year — where opposition groups had “a funded voice” to help defeat some ballot items. He said this PAC effort is aimed to counter those voices.

The first report on the PAC’s contributions and expenditures isn’t due until Nov. 8, according to the state Ethics Administration.

Carlee Alm-Labar
Carlee Alm-Labar, courtesy Southern Lifestyle Development

Blanchard worked as Joey Durel’s chief development officer and later as public works director before he resigned in 2015.

Alm-Labar took Blanchard’s position as CDO and later worked as director of planning and development under Mayor-President Robideaux. She left the government job in June.

Both departed LCG for jobs with Southern Lifestyle Development, the real-estate company behind River Ranch and numerous other developments around the parish and Gulf Coast region.

Voters will decide Dec. 8 whether to amend the Home Rule Charter to split the city-parish council and to amend the charter in various areas to reflect those changes.

In approved, the new Lafayette city council and the new parish council would have five members each.