By Jerry Bell
At 12 p.m., Chamber President Jerry Bell called the April Chamber of Commerce meeting to order. The opening prayer was given by council woman Margaret Skinner-Brown followed by the Pledge given by Major Jerry Bell. A special thanks to Studio 3 Beauty Bar for hosting the meeting and providing a great lunch.
Special guests from DOTD were recognized Don Duberville, P.E, the District 07 Engineer Administrator, introduced his team which were Seth Woods, Patrick Cusey and Jarrod Chaumont. Each guest explained their function in DOTD. Duberville gave a brief description of his role and asked the Chamber members present what their concerns were.
Chamber Manager Lillian Karr gave a report on just how many deaths had occurred on Hwy. 27 and asked what could be done. Other members also stated their concerns and gave personal accounts of what they had experienced on Hwy. 27. Mrs. Karr stated that Hwy. 27 was known as the highway of death. Chamber President Jerry Bell asked what could be done at the intersection of Highway 27/12 by Burger King to allow the large trucks to make the turn towards the east.
Duberville took notes and explained details about the Louisiana Highway Project Delivery Process. He stated that bringing this to his attention could begin a process, although a very lengthy one, and could start a feasibility analysis of the proposed project. Duberville explained that there were six stages to the system and this meeting would be considered stage zero.
The meeting with DOTD was very cordial and President Bell thanked the DOTD for their help during the recent hurricanes. They provided generators to keep our traffic lights operating after the hurricanes.
Other business conducted during the meeting was the financial report and about our recent banquet.
The Chamber wants to give special thanks to the Riley Smith & Sons Funeral Home for hosting the banquet, Brother Carlie Jackson and First United Pentecostal Church, but especially to Rebecca Smith and her crew for providing a wonderful meal. According to all, the Chamber Banquet was very successful.
Chamber President Jerry Bell stated that the Chamber was able to provide a deserving student a scholarship again this year.
As always, we thank the Heritage Place Hotel & Suites for allowing us to meet there.
The host for the May meeting will be Anthony Kennon.