Jury feuds over choices for rec board

Published 12:00 am Monday, February 24, 2003

VIDALIA, La. &045; A discussion of recreation board appointments during the Concordia Parish Police Jury’s Monday meeting turned ugly quicker than a bad call at a Little League game.

The debate dominated much of the meeting and also resulted in spectators being expelled from the room for several minutes as the board took a recess, during which the debate continued.

The disagreement stemmed from a dispute over which of two motions to appoint new members to Recreation District No. 3 was actually passed. The motions were made in the jury’s Feb. 10 meeting.

Email newsletter signup

The district’s board operates and maintains recreation facilities and programs in the Vidalia area.

The person whose appointment was in question, Eddie Ray Jackson, sent a letter to the jury after the Feb. 10 meeting requesting that his name be withdrawn from consideration.

Still, juror Willie Dunbar maintained during Monday’s meeting that the motion that was made Feb. 10 to appoint Jackson was valid.

But according to Robert’s Rules of Order, said jury Secretary Russell Wagoner, a substitute motion can only be made by someone who voted for the original motion, and only if there has been a change in the issue at hand that makes the original motion no longer valid.

&uot;The failure started when our representative in District 2 (Dunbar) didn’t have the opportunity to make a recommendation&uot; to the post, said parish resident Windell Millicks, whom Dunbar intended to recommend for the post.

Juror Charlie Blaney then called Dunbar to task for allegedly &uot;harassing and intimidating&uot; rec district members and for repeatedly bringing up rec district issues in jury meetings.

&uot;This is one of the best districts Š and it’s because of the leadership,&uot; who are volunteers, Blaney said.

If harassment continues, he said, he is considering filing malfeasance charges against Dunbar. &uot;You’re trying to make this a racial issue, and it’s not,&uot; Blaney said.

&uot;You can file what you want, and they (state officials) will find out a lot more about what the rec district is doing, Š not distributing money fairly,&uot; Dunbar said.

With Smith wielding his gavel several times to end the discussion, a vote was hastily taken to call a recess, during which the audience was told to leave the jury room while the discussion continued for several minutes.

However, no action was taken on the issue Monday.

The result? The appointees named in the original motion, &uot;Don Turner and Wes Shirley, are still appointed,&uot; Wagoner said.