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June 12, 2019

This is something I rarely do, always depending on the readers to interpret information as it is given. This will be an exception. Last week I wrote that “there were several Harrisonburg teachers who went all over the parish, complaining about their large class sizes due to the addition of out of district children.” A later paragraph stated that “there were more teachers that appreciated the extra children and the contributions that they and their families made to the school.”
This is pretty simple. I am sorry that some people read what they want to read, much as they see what they want to see, and hear what they want to hear. And I stand by my comments. I just wanted to make those two statements clear to people with misconceptions about what they read.
Reading the news this morning, it was stated that Morganza spillway will remain closed to protect the crawfish and row crop farms in the Atchafalaya Basin. I wish there were some state and federal officials who had the same tender attitude towards Catahoula and Concordia Parishes.
Rain cannot drain off our fields because the river level is still so high. Glade Bayou has backed up all over the back of Smithland, cutting the fields into ridges and flooded bottoms. The big drainage ditches cannot get rid of the excess rainfall that we’ve had because the Glade is full. Grassy Lake and River Slough are still out of bounds and won’t be lowered until Black River is down below the level it is now.
These out of bound bodies of water affect the whole area; Moss Grove, the Calhoun Farm, some of the Glade Plantation, all have fields chopped up by this backwater that won’t leave. And this is just the land from Highway 564, around the levee to the Black River locks. The farms off Highway 124, down to the Avoyelles line, also have backwater that remains, here in the middle of June. Or perhaps I should say, this water can’t leave, because Black just cannot seem to make any significant fall.
According to statistics we’ve mentioned before, Louisiana is pretty much 50th in the nation in the important categories that show progress, and our Catahoula is in the bottom five of the 64 parishes. Is that why we are ignored when it comes to getting rid of this water? After all, who pays attention to the bottom of the barrel on anything. We are too few to matter in the bigger schemes of state or federal government.
I wish that some of that grant money that the state is giving out soon could be used for big pumps to be placed strategically around the parish, to pump off the water into the river after heavy rains or accumulations of backwater. It looked like the money was targeted more for municipalities with street problems and water systems. Harrisonburg needs water help, and heaven knows, and there is certainly a need for more money for improved roads in Jonesville. Some were resurfaced under the Hiram Evans terms as mayor, and some are still like driving over small boulders.
Perhaps now that the mayor of Jonesville has received his salary increase, he can put his energies on improving the physical facilities of the town. In true political fashion, the special meeting to give him a salary increase (what percent: 50%? 100%?) was held when two of the town councilmen could not attend. And wasn’t it just coincidental that those two who couldn’t come at the early time were the ones who would have voted against a raise. It is good to know that Jonesville has such a thriving economy that a raise can be given to someone in office only six months, with little to show for helping the town. A new police officer might have done more good for the town, and given the parish deputies a break on patrolling the streets.
One thing that is encouraging to me is to see that Dr. Ralph Abraham, our congressman, is rising in the polls for governor of Louisiana. He has been a voice for conservatism in Congress, and is a strong supporter of President Trump. Being a military man, he is also an advocate for our troops, and never fails to stand behind them. He is a veterinarian and also a medical doctor. He has run both businesses well, and understands the importance of sound fiscal policy in private business and government.
Anyone who supports President Trump and agrees with the great changes he has made to Make America Great Again, should be 100% behind Dr. Abraham in his quest for governor of our failing state. He has helped to get America moving forward, and would be a godsend for our state. Not since John McKeithen have we have had a man from our part of the state with the chance to be governor. The best thing to me is that he is a good and honest man, a Christian and a patriot. Ralph Abraham, doctor and congressman, would make a marvelous governor, and could help we who love our state, Make Louisiana Great Again.