Roux is yet to pocket a payment under the drainage consultant contract | pelican post

Bill Roux on February 11, 2009 when he argued for EA Drainage to be under Ascension Parish government

Much has been made of the November 8, 2021 approval by the East Ascension Consolidated Gravity Drainage District #1 of a “Not to Exceed” of $49,999 Consulting Agreement with Bill Roux; may be too much. Sure, it was a slap in the face for citizens adamantly opposed to Roux’s hiring, but six-member voters voting to approve should be used to these by now. And “it was only” $49,999…of which Roux pocketed nearly a dollar according to Ascension’s Custodian of Records response to a recent public records request.

Please produce all documentation relating to payments made to William Roux since November 8, 2021, when his consulting services were obtained through an approved contract with East Ascension Consolidated Gravity Drainage District No. 1 (EACGDD #1). Requested records include, but are not limited to:

1. All invoices submitted by William Roux
2. Canceled checks attesting to payment to William Roux
3. The written document attesting to each request for William Roux’s services made by the EACGDD #1 and/or the parish president
4. Every e-mail received from/sent to William Roux regarding counseling services provided by Roux to EACGDD #1 or Ascension Parish Government.

As of February 18, there were “no records meeting the request”.

The vote was 6 to 2 three months ago, after months of negotiations that resulted in the preservation of President Clint Cointment’s role on EA Drainage, with a director of drainage to be recruited but accountable to the administration. For some inexplicable reason, a faction of the Council insisted on the consultation agreement with Roux, the rejection of which would have been a deciding factor. The six votes to hire Roux…

combined with Cointment’s acquiescence, extinguished the flame that had been raging since June 28…

Commission cuts payment of drainage rights, ignoring public outcry

ensuring that Cointment retains control over EA Drainage and its budget (a budget about to be infused with millions of federal dollars). How much control remains to be seen since at some point a drainage manager will be hired (whether the job qualifications and corresponding tasks can be resolved).

What remains for Roux to consult? The detailed list of its proposed functions:

  1. Act as a liaison between the EADD Commissioners and the Ascension Parish President to provide a clear exchange of performance information and concerns
    legal drainage activities in the East Ascension Consolidated Drainage District.
  2. Assist in resolving conflicts between EADD commissioners and parish president/staff.
  3. Provide advice to the parish president and EAD commissioners for consideration on matters and/or projects concerning EAD.
  4. Attend project and board engineering meetings as requested by the EACGDD #1 Board of Directors or Parish President to obtain a clear understanding of the status and scope of existing projects and
    proposed drainage projects. This includes, but is not limited to, monthly steering committee meetings for the ongoing Ascension Parish Floodplain Management Plan, led by HNTB.
  5. Attend drainage board meetings at the request of EACGDD Council #1 or the Parish President as an observer only, unless asked to provide confidential information to an individual council
    members or the ward president. No public comments.
  6. Attend regional government meetings relating to multi-agency projects as requested by the EACGDD #1 Board of Directors or the Parish President.
  7. Attend USACOE meetings as requested by the EACGDD #1 Board of Directors or Parish President.
  8. Provide other services as agreed by the Consultant, the EADD Board of Directors and the Parish President.

was approved with several caveats.

All of Roux’s communications, if he ever had any, are contractually confidential with a blanket ban on public comment (Louisiana public meeting law/damned public records doctrine).

An official request for tasks to be performed by the consultant will consist of an authorization from the president and vice president of the EACGDD #1 or the parish president via the official parish email.

Which elected official wants the voting public to read his email putting Roux on the counter?

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