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Lafayette City-Parish Alignment Commission holds second meeting

Heard final PTC report, dissenting opinion
Posted at 3:13 PM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 16:30:11-05

The Lafayette City-Parish Alignment Commission met Tuesday for the second time to continue examining the relationship between the parish and city.

Members heard the final report from the Protect the City Committee and a dissenting opinion.

Jan Swift, Protect the City Committee Chair, presented the PTC's final report. The committee ultimately concluded that "deconsolidation would best serve the interests of Lafayette," Swift said, and that consolidation has not benefited the city.

Members agreed that the city would be better served with its own mayor and that it should establish a separating operating account where city tax dollars are deposited. They also agreed that the city, parish, and/or LCG should enter into intergovernmental agreements when engaging in joint services, clarifying who spends how much and who works on projects.

Swift said PTC didn't directly study whether or not the city should have its own police chief, but given recent controversy surrounding the firing of former chief Thomas Glover, the topic "came to the surface that we should elect our own chief."

The PTC noted several issues about the current relationship between the city and parish, including the city having a lack of autonomy and the budget/funding. Ultimately, the committee recommended that the city and parish councils convene a charter commission to study deconsolidation and to present a plan that "returns self-governance to the City of Lafayette."

PTC Committee member Mark Pope presented a dissenting opinion on the group's final report; he stated that "10 meetings over the course of four months was simply not enough time to wisely make this decision."

He rebutted several points brought up by the PTC committee, saying in his opinion that, "much of the information received by the PTCC is inaccurate and incomplete."

Pope made four recommendations, including amending language in the current charter to include a definition of the parish government's specific mission, including its duties and the corresponding source of funding for each.

You can watch the full meeting here.

The PTC Committee's final report can be found in full here. Mark Pope's dissenting opinion and recommendations are below.

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