Ferriday alderman-elect allowed to serve on recreation board

Published 12:00 am Friday, June 24, 2016

FERRIDAY — A Ferriday alderman-elect will be allowed to serve on the Concordia Parish Recreation District No. 1 commission in an attempt to improve services to the town.

Alderman-elect Glenn Henderson was nominated by Concordia Parish Police Juror Jerry Beatty of Ferriday to serve as a district No. 1 commissioner. Louisiana Assistant Attorney General Madeline Carbonette has released an opinion stating it would not be a conflict of interest for Henderson to serve in these two offices.

“There has just been a disconnect between the town of Ferriday and the recreation board,” Henderson said. “Hopefully this puts us in a position where we will have a better working relationship.”

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Mayor Gene Allen said Ferriday is paying the 3-mill ad valorem tax enacted in 2008 but is receiving no money from the recreation district, which serves Ferriday, Clayton and Wildsville. The Louisiana Legislative Auditor’s office reports the commission raised $86,790 taxes in 2014, the last year for which a report is available.

“We provide recreation at the (Florida Avenue) seventh grade gym, but the Town of Ferriday pays for that,” Allen said. “The citizens are paying taxes and are not getting any representation from the recreation district at all.

“I hope Mr. Henderson, when he comes on, will make sure the people of Ferriday benefit from the recreation program.”

District No. 1 Chair Johnny Woodruff said the commission does provide money to Ferriday, but being a newly appointed chair, he didn’t want to get into specifics on how that broke down.

Woodruff said he was looking forward to working with Henderson and said good things are on the horizon for recreation in the district.

“I want us to work together as a team for the kids,” he said. “I think Mr. Henderson is going to do a good job on the board — we welcome any opinions and suggestions on providing better services. It is all about the kids.”

Police Jury President Jimmy Jernigan said the jury requested the attorney general’s opinion.

“We didn’t have any problem with it,” he said. “We just wanted to clarify that he could serve on both boards.”

Henderson said he was doing this for the children of Ferriday.

“I just want us to pull together for the good of the kids,” he said. “I want to make sure we are providing recreation the way we should for the citizens of Ferriday, and Clayton and Wildsville.”

Having served on the board of aldermen previously approximately eight years ago, Henderson said he is better prepared to do the job now, and he was looking forward to serving the citizens along with mayor-elect Sherrie Jacobs. They, along with Chryl Smith Lee, will be sworn in on July 1.

“(Jacobs) was my old English teacher, so I’m looking forward to working with her,” Henderson said. “I think good things are happening. I’m fired up and waiting to go get started.”