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The Current sues LEDA for applications

Posted at 2:39 PM, Jul 26, 2021

The Current has filed a public records lawsuit against the Lafayette Economic Development Authority and its president and CEO, Gregg Gothreaux, to compel the agency to turn over the more than 30 applications/résumés of candidates seeking to replace Gothreaux.

The independent, non-profit media group reports that their suit was filed by Current Media LLC in state district court Monday and assigned to 15th Judicial District Court Judge Michele Billeaud. In addition to the documents, The Current is seeking court costs, legal fees and penalties.

The Current reports that, in mid-July, The Acadiana Advocate reported that approximately 35 people had applied for the job ahead of a July 14 deadline. Gothreaux, who has held the job for 26 years, announced in June that he would retire later this year. LEDA is funded by a parish property tax and has a $4 million annual budget and 20 employees. The CEO position pays a base salary of $250,000 plus benefits.

In phone and email conversations over the past week, Gothreaux declined to produce the records, saying LEDA does not possess the applications and referring The Current’s inquiries to the consultant hired to manage the candidate search.

Louisiana courts have held that one cannot have a private application for a public job. In particular, the Supreme Court held that there was no exemption in the state's public record laws for employment applications.

To read the Current's full story, click here.

We reached out to LEDA for a response; they had no comment.