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Recovery of parish going very well, Davis says By Erik Sanzenbach St. Tammany News Even though St. Tammany Parish President Kevin Davis thinks the parish is better off than before Hurricane Katrina ripped through the area, he is amazed at how much time it took to get to this point. “I never thought the recovery would take this long,” Davis said. Still, he said he is happy with what has been done since the storm after four years, but cautions there are still projects to finish. For example, he is still fighting with the Federal Emergency Management Agency over the clean up of the canals in the Coin de Lestin subdivision. The parish has sued FEMA because the agency would not pay to dredge the canals so boats could get in and out. The matter is still in the courts. But Davis said the parish has saved up some money and applied for grants, and the parish may end up cleaning the canals. He said that could take place within the next 60 days. Davis said most of the parish is cleaned up and the work orders with FEMA have all been addressed and finished. They are still few FEMA trailers in the parish, but most of those are in trailer parks. Since Katrina, with the help of federal and state money, the parish has repaired some 367 roads in the parish at a cost of $33 million, and there is more road repairs going on. More good news for the parish, according to Davis is the large number of businesses that have set up shop in the parish. From big corporations like Chevron moving to Mandeville, Rooms to Go in Pearl River and Textron to Slidell to many small businesses, the past year has seen a real business boom in the parish. That is illustrated by one amazing fact. From a parish considered a bedroom community with a population of commuters, today 54 per-


cent of parish residents work in St. Tammany Parish. Even though the soft national economy put the parish government through some lean times earlier in the year, Davis said that the government is still within its budget. “There will be no layoffs,” Davis said, “But we will not be able to do any capital spending such as buying new equipment.” Davis has two years left on his term and he has some big plans for the parish. He wants to kick start the Learning Center in Lacombe. This project would have four local colleges set up Northshore campuses on the north side of Interstate 12. He said that would go a long way in educating our children, creating jobs and improving the parish economy. There is also his vision of putting an aerial public transportation plan that was designed by engineers at Michoud. He would like to see a prototype built at the Learning Center. “If people actually see it, they will want to expand it all over the parish,” Davis said confidently. Even though, his earlier attempts to build an entertainment center on the lakefront south of Slidell fizzled when the suggestion of a casino would fund

the site, Davis is still optimistic about the entire project. He said he is in talks with the Audubon Institute about setting up a wildlife museum and display to draw people to the area. The parish and Slidell are also putting their resources together to improve sewage and wastewater treatment in the parish. That is an ongoing project that will become a reality in the next couple of years. There is also the fishing pier in Slidell. The state will sell a part of the old Twin Span to the parish that will go out about 2,000 feet into Lake Pontchartrain to be used as a fishing pier. Davis said the parish just got a lagniappe in the deal. The state offered parts of both the north and south bound sections of the old twin span to be used as a pier. That will draw a lot of fishermen. Davis said he is working with officials to see about using reusable energy to cut power bills in the state. He said they are talking about windmills and geothermal energy. There is also work on a fiber optic system for the 911 emergency phone systems. This network will be only in the parish and not go to New Orleans so the

system will not shut down like it did during Hurricane Gustav last year. Over all, Davis said the future

of St. Tammany Parish is very bright and once the “entire recovery” is completed, the sky is the limit for the parish.



PARISH COUNCIL District 1 Marty Dean P.O. Box 2799 Covington, LA 70434 Cell:(985) 789-7444 District 2 Gary Cooper P.O. Box 202 Covington, LA 70434 Cell:(985) 590-9133 District 3 James A. Thompson 78111 J&B Drive Folsom, LA 70437 Home:(985) 796-0038 District 4 R. Reid Falconer, AIA P.O. Box 1026 Madisonville, LA 70447 Work:(985) 898-2591 Cell:(985) 778-1538 District 5 Marty Gould 300 Buckthorn Circle Covington, LA 70433 Work:(985) 898-2591 District 6 Rebecca Crawford-Howell 37411 Charles Anderson Road Pearl River, LA 70452 Work:(985) 863-7007 Cell:(985) 590-9134 District 7 Al Hamauei 60162 Oaklawn Avenue Lacombe, LA 70445 Home:(985) 882-5735 Cell:(985) 789-0412

District 8 Chris Canulette 109 Stratford Dr. Slidell, LA 70458 Home:(985) 649-3725 Cell:(985) 290-6751 District 9 E.L. Bellisario 3090 Gause Blvd #535 Slidell, LA 70461 Home:(985) 641-2268 Cell:(985) 788-8186 District 10 Henry Billiot 821 Asbury Dr. Mandeville, LA 70471 Cell:(985) 373-0316 District 11 Steve Stefancik 107 Royal Dr. Slidell, LA 70460 Home:(985) 649-4580 District 12 Jerry Binder 470 Hickory Drive Slidell, LA 70458 Home:(985) 641-7064 Cell:(985) 641-2822 District 13 Richard Artigue 53057 Hwy 433 Slidell, LA 70461 Home:(985) 649-8952 Cell:(985) 768-1293 District 14 Ken Burkhalter P.O. Box 1489 Slidell, LA 70459 Work:(985) 898-2591 Cell:(985) 201-4163




MAJOR ANNUAL EVENTS IN ST. TAMMANY ABITA SPRINGS OPRY Live from the Abita Springs Town Hall, the Opry, whose mission is to preserve and present Louisiana’s roots music, features old-time country, bluegrass and gospel performed on the original acoustic instruments, such as the banjo, mandolin, string bass, accordion, acoustic guitar and fiddle. The show is broadcast live on local television and radio stations monthly in the spring and fall. Call 892-0711 or go to ANTIQUE STREET FAIR Visitors crowd the streets of Slidell’s historic Olde Towne each spring and fall searching for antiques, china and vintage collectibles. Hundreds of antiques dealers and interior design specialists from around the country set up their wares in the streets of Olde Towne. The next street fair is scheduled for Oct. 24 and 25. Call 641-6316 or go to ARTS EVENING Held in Olde Towne Slidell, Arts Evening is one of the largest cultural events on the Northshore. Held each fall, it is a celebration of visual and performing arts, dance and music showcasing the works of more than 100 local artists. Enjoy antiques shopping and dining as well. This year’s event is set for Nov. 7. 646-4375. CHRISTMAS UNDER THE STARS A spectacular seven-night event in December, the event transforms Slidell’s Griffith Park into a winter wonderland of holiday lights, decorated trees, a miniature train display and more. Live entertainment is also provided, with each night celebrating a different holiday theme. The festivities begin on Dec. 7. 646-4375. CRAWFISH COOK-OFF Held every April in Slidell’s Fritchie Park, the Crawfish Cook-off is one of St. Tammany’s biggest cook-off events. Over 50 teams compete for the title of “Best Tasting Crawfish,” and proceeds go to support the Hospice Foundation of the South. Attendees can enjoy performances from several live bands, games and other activities. 643-5470 GREAT LOUISIANA BIRD FEST Louisiana’s annual birding festival attracts wildlife enthusiasts from all over the country. Held in April, the festival features birding field trips and photography workshops guided by local experts to locations throughout the parish. 626-1238. HOLIDAY OF LIGHTS Opening ceremonies begin with a fireworks display, rides, thousands of lighs and a visit from Santa. Enjoy live entertainment, music and choral groups singing your favorite holiday carols, and view the spectacular light display on the Tammany Trace throughout the month of December. 867-9490. JAZZ ‘N THE VINES Outdoor concert series offering a variety of musical styles from jazz, swing and bluegrass. Bring your blanket, lawn chair, umbrella, flashlight, picnic fare and thirst for wine as you enjoy music under the stars. The next series begins on Sept. 12. Go to or call 892-9742.


LACOMBE CRAB COOK-OFF A celebration of southern Louisiana favorites—the great outdoors, live music and the Gulf Coast’s best seafood. Held each June under mosslade live oaks in Lacombe’s John Davis Park, the event features thousands of crabs prepared a variety of ways, including soft shell crab po’ boys. Visit or call 882-5528. LOUISIANA ALLIGATOR FESTIVAL Held for the first time this year, this festival was created for family and friends to enjoy musical entertainment, gator recipes prepared by regional chefs, a Miss and Mini-Miss St. Tammany Alligator Festival pageant, games for young and old, and artisans displaying their latest wares. Scheduled for Sept. 26-27 at the Koop Drive Trailhead in Mandeville. 639-8040.

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EVENTS Continued from Page 10 LOUISIANA BICYCLE FESTIVAL A summertime treat for bicycle enthusiasts in June, held just before Father’s Day. Includes antique bicycle exhibits, bicycle flea market, St. Tammany Trace cruise, a log pull, unique bike contest, FAT tire clinic, prizes, high-wheeler demonstration and more. Go to or call 892-2624. MADISONVILLE WOODEN BOAT FESTIVAL Hundreds of wooden boats line the shore of the Tchefuncte River each October for the largest gathering of watercraft on the Gulf Coast. Activities and live music entertain the crowds, including the Quick & Dirty Boat Building Contest and Race. Visit or call 845-9200.

Tammany also adds a twist with two boat parades on the water: the Krewe of Bilge in Slidell and the Krewe of Tchefuncte in Madisonville. For Bilge call 6436680, and for Tchefuncte call 727-3422.

MANDEVILLE SEAFOOD FESTIVAL The second-oldest festival held in St. Tammany, featuring seafood and alternative dishes, arts and craft booths, children’s entertainment areas and live music throughout the event, with the annual fireworks display on the Fourth of July. Go to or call 624-9762.

SLIDELL HERITAGE FESTIVAL Good old-fashioned family fun for the Fourth of July in Olde Towne. Featuring Louisiana cuisine, drinks, foot-stomping music and children’s events. Don’t miss the fireworks over Bayou Bonfouca. Check out or call 643-1234.

MARDI GRAS PARADES Each Carnival season St. Tammany celebrates with many familyfriendly parades that include decorative floats and costumed riders showering crowds with beads and trinkets. St.

THREE RIVERS ART FESTIVAL This juried arts festival held in November in Historic Downtown Covington attracts a talented group of artists and fine craftsmen from around the country. With more than 150

exhibiting artists, art lovers can choose from a wide selection of works in a variety of media. Visit or call 871-4141. For more listings by month, go to


Mayor Morris: Slidell is just wonderful By Erik Sanzenbach St. Tammany News Sitting in his renovated office at the historic Slidell City Hall on Second Street in Olde Towne, Mayor Ben Morris looks and talks like a happy man. He should be. He has been at the helm of bringing the city back after Hurricane Katrina devastated half the city four years ago, and today, Slidell almost looks like a brand new city. “The city is doing just wonderful,” Morris said. When Katrina blew through four years, ago, the southern half of the city was flooded with six feet of water. The city administration lost about 22 buildings, and Morris said that by the end of his term in July 2010, work will either have been begun or finished on all of them. Besides the renovated City Hall, the new Municipal Building


that will house the City Council will be finished in January. Plans to demolish and rebuild the Municipal Auditorium will start in March. The new Slidell Animal Control Office and Animal

Shelter is set to open in Spring 2010. Bids will go out for the new Slidell Senior Center in the next couple of weeks, and the plans are being drawn up for the second municipal building that will go right behind City Hall. Within two years, the entire city administration will be back on Second Street, instead of working out of a series of trailers on Bayou Lane. Financially, Slidell is doing very well, Morris said. They expect a $1.2 million surplus by the end of the year. Morris is very proud that there has been a surplus at the end of every year of his time in office, including 2005 when Katrina hit the city. The city recently got $3 million from the federal government to fix the city’s streets and that is an ongoing project. The city has applied for grants to fix the drainage system, and Morris hopes to get that money soon. Speaking of streets, construc-

tion crews will be laying cement soon for Summit Boulevard, the main thoroughfare through the Summit Fremaux project that will extend from Fremaux Driver all the way to Old Spanish Trail. There will also be a new service road that will parallel Interstate 10. Though the national economy has slowed plans for the $1 billion retail project, Morris said the developer Bayer Properties is still gung-ho and the entire project will be about 8 months behind schedule. He said that the University of New Orleans is ready to go with its plans to build a tech park and Northshore campus in the same area. Over at the Slidell Municipal Airport, the Federal Aviation Administration has spent over $15 million to renovate the airfield. The city just finished repaving the main runway, and there are 20 new hangars at the airport.

Morris thinks the city has improved since Katrina and gotten even better. Since the storm, Slidell has been named a Main Street Program recipient, declared an Historical Preservation Area, and has been lauded for how clean the town looks. Future projects that are in the planning stages involve cooperative partnerships between the city and St. Tammany Parish. There are plans to build a flood protection levee on the south end of town behind the First Baptist Church on Pontchartrain Drive. Morris said that should be completed after the 2010 hurricane season. The parish and Slidell are also planning to combine sewer and wastewater treatment facilities that will improve sewage not only for Slidell, but the entire parish. “I’m very excited about the future,” Morris said. “But for a lot of this I will be on the sidelines.”


SLIDELL CITY COUNCIL COUNCILMAN-AT-LARGE Landon Cusimano 311 Michigan Ave. Slidell, LA 70458 (985) 646-4307 (o) (985) 649-5449 (h) COUNCILWOMAN-AT-LARGE Kim Harbison 315 Oriole Drive, Slidell, LA 70458 (986) 646-4307 (o) (985) 649-4438 (h) DISTRICT A Lionel Hicks 3103 Terrace Ave. Slidell, LA 70459 (985) 290-8853 (h) (985) 646-4307 (o) (985) 643-1854 (fax) DISTRICT B Richey Hursey Jr. (985) 285-1200 (h) (985) 646-4307 (o)

DISTRICT C Warren Crockett 707 Maine Ave. Slidell, LA (985) 646-4307 (o) DISTRICT D Joe Fraught 1043 St. Peter St. Slidell, LA 70460 (985) 646-4307 (o) (985) 643-1854 (fax) DISTRICT E Raymond Canada 1100 Rue Latour Slidell, LA 70458 (985) 646-4307 (o) (985) 643-1854 (fax) (985) 643-8801 (h) DISTRICT F Jim Devereux 105 Northam Court Slidell, LA 70458 (985) 646-4307 (o) DISTRICT G BILL BORCHERT 1068 Front Street Slidell, LA 70458 985-781-0400


Comprehensive plan almost done, says Watkins By Debbie Glover St. Tammany News The final phase of the comprehensive plan for the city of Covington will be underway in October with a hopeful adoption and final plan in place early in 2010. “After almost three years of planning and public hearings to create the plan and land use maps, the end is finally in sight,” said Covington Mayor Candace Watkins. She said the biggest change for the city as a whole is the renaming of zoning classifications that will better reflect their use. “Current land uses will not be changed to prohibit an existing use of the property,” said Watkins. Many people are afraid they will have to change their business or home to reflect the new classification or zoning and this simply is not true, she said. People will be able to continue


their everyday lives. In most cases, only the name will change. The city is also involved is several other projects, said the Mayor. The Walker Collaborative, from Tennessee, has been award-

ed the contract to act as consultant to develop a plan for the revitalization of the West 30s. The Northshore Community Foundation is funding this plan that will assist the city in determining how to better serve the residents of the area. The Covington Police Department has responded to numerous requests to develop a community-policing program. Jeff Boehm has already begun in this capacity and is initiating programs to get to know the community better in order to serve them and meet specific needs. Recently, he arranged funding by area businesses to football teams at the Covington Recreation Department to furnish needed equipment. The CPD has also relinquished several parking places on Theard Street on Saturday to allow for more parking for the Farmer’s Market, which continues to grow in popularity.

Currently the city is working on an application to become a economic development certified community with Louisiana Economic Development. The deadline for applications is Sept. 18. New businesses and restaurants continue to open throughout the city. The Boston Street Streetscape is a project the mayor is beginning. It will involve the repaving or overlay of Boston Street and will create a new look for the city’s main thoroughfare. This would include new SMART traffic signals that stay green unless there is traffic waiting on the cross street. The budget process has begun for 2010. Although there will be no raises and no big capital projects, there will still be some lift station repairs and street overlays that must be done. Sales tax collections have been low, but the budget has allowed for this and will continue to be conservative for the coming year. Along with the budget concern is a utility rate analysis that is being done to determine the deficit between operating the utilities and the rates. “We certainly need to cover our costs in providing the services. Right now,

we are not covering costs,” said Watkins. A new updated hurricane incident plan was created this year. Watkins says it will enumerate and set timetables for daily reports in the event of a storm. Grants that have covered costs for many projects around the city are still be utilized as much as possible. Watkins said the most recent grant application will be used for the completion of the Pineview Middle School sidewalk extension to the Covington Recreation Department field. Far from being a “lame duck” mayor, Watkins is working to get as much accomplished as she can over the next two years. “I am certainly not slowing down,” she said. In fact, she is looking forward to completing many of the above projects before she leaves office in 2011. The Covington City Council meets at 6 p.m. the first and third Tuesdays of the month in the Council Chambers, 222 Kirkland St. Council — City Hall 317 N. Jefferson St. Council Office- 898-4722 Council Office Fax 898-4718 Council e-mail

COVINGTON CITY COUNCIL Dee Dee McKinnon Council Clerk W. T. “Trey” Blackall III Councilman-at-large Council President Matthew T. Faust Councilman-at-large Council Vice President Frances R. Dunn Councilwoman District A

Clarence Romage Councilman District B Mark Sacco Councilman District C Martin J. “Marty” Benoit Councilman District D Lee S. Alexius Councilman District E


Price says traffic, development moving Mandeville forward By Debbie Glover St. Tammany News Commuters on the western side of St. Tammany Parish have one thing in common — they all pass through Mandeville on their way south. Mandeville Mayor Eddie Price said, “Mandeville is the entrance to the Northshore from the Causeway.” As such, the parish government and the Causeway Commission both have a keen interest in Mandeville, especially U. S. Highway 190 between the bridge and Louisiana Highway 22. The current project of adding lanes involves more than meets the eye, said Price. Infrastructure improvements are often done at the same time, including widening ditches, increasing drainage and sewer infrastructure as well as adding traffic lanes. Price said that commuters through Mandeville will see a great many changes over the next year, including a roundabout on Monroe Street and an improved access intersection for North Causeway Boulevard/ U. S. 190, including a possible figure eight. Price added that instead of one lane, plans include two lanes westbound on La. 22 from the U. S. 190/North Causeway intersection “all the way to Madisonville.” Other infrastructure and road projects are planned for the city, including a bicycle bridge across the West Causeway Approach. Price would like to see bike paths available all the way to the Lakefront through parts of old Mandeville, making the city more bike friendly. The addition of a bike path does present challenges, however. “My


goal is to please 100 percent of the people. If houses are close to the street on one side, we’ll use the other side for a bike path or sidewalk,” said Price. “I’d rather use compromise as a way to help satisfy people. The last thing I want to do is simply say no,” he said. In addition to the roads and infrastructure projects, Mandeville is going green in sewer treatment projects. Price said that hurricanes are killing off the marshlands and instead of simply treating waste, he is moving toward a natural, ecologicallyfriendly way of disposing of waste. Price said it has been proven that treated affluant waste makes plant life grow 10 times faster and pushes the saltwater back to the lake. By using the natural system, the lake and lakefront can be kept pristine. The Mandeville lakefront between Sunset Drive and the end of Lakeshore Drive toward the Continued on Page 16


MANDEVILLE CITY COUNCIL Adelaide Boettner Council At Large 264-9277 Trilby T. Lenfant Council At Large Mayor Pro Tem 264-9278

Jerry Coogan Council District 1 (504) 400-4244 Carla Buchholz Council District 2 264-2481 Jeff Bernard Council District 3 705-1883

FORWARD Continued from Page 15 east is not only a recreation area, but an ecological and cultural area, said Price. As such, his vision is to see the western portion of the lakefront, on the western side of the Causeway, kept undeveloped and natural marshland. His reasons include a natural storm barrier and preservation of the ecological systems in place for future generations. “Once it’s gone, it’s gone,” he said. He would like to see it in a natural state to Madisonville. One of many problems is how to accomplish this without giving up needed revenue for the city. The return of Albertson’s and the new Neighborhood Market Store by Wal-Mart will add tremendously to the sales tax revenues for the city. Price said the city only receives 10 mills from property tax revenue, so sales tax is very important to the city, about $13 million a year. He said the rev-

enue is obtained from restaurants, retail outlets, service businesses and grocery and drug stores. Price would also like to see the area around the Trailhead become more developed, perhaps with public/private partnerships that would spur foot traffic and bring people back to Old Mandeville. He also would like to see the cultural economy return to the older part of the city surrounding the Trailhead with more unique businesses and art galleries in the area. Serving his final term in office, Price has a limited amount of time to finish the projects he has started. Despite recent personal and legal challenges, his mind is still set on the future and completing his job as mayor. Mandeville City Hall 3101 E. Causeway Approach Mandeville, La. 70448 624-3145 Fax 624-3108






ABITA SPRINGS Abita Springs Town Hall P. O. Box 461 22161 Level Street Abita Springs, La. 70420 892-0711 Fax 892-1029 Aldermen Sheri Sable Campbell (Mayor Pro Tem) Troy Dugas Patricia Edmiston Greg Lemons Pat Patterson MAYOR LOUIS FITZMORRIS

FOLSOM Town Hall 82378 Jones St. Folsom 70437 796-5607 Aldermen Phillip Bickham Ronald Holliday Charles “Ken” Wilt



MADISONVILLE Town Hall 403 St. Francis St. P. O. Box 160 Madisonville, La. 70447 845-3636 Fax 845-7931 Council members Jerry Lange Lawrence P. Ostendorf Mark Badeaux James Bouey Timothy Bounds MAYOR PETER GITZ

PEARL RIVER Town Hall 39460 Willis Aly Pearl River, La. 70452-4926 863-5800 Board of Aldermen David McQueen Jay Scroggins Virgil Phillips Ruby Gauley Marie Crowe



ST. TAMMANY PARISH SCHOOL BOARD Neal M. Hennegan District 1 Schools: Mandeville High, Pontchartrain Elementary, Tchefuncte Middle Precincts: 401, 402, 404, 413, 418, 419, M01, M06, M08 Elizabeth B. Heintz District 2 Schools: Covington Elementary, Madisonville Elementary, Madisonville Junior High, Pitcher Junior High Precincts: 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, C01, C02, C03, C04, MD1 Michael J. Dirmann District 3 Schools: Abita Springs Middle, Covington High, Covington Pathways, Lyon Elementary, Pine View Middle Precincts: 303, 304, 305, 308, A01A, C05, C06, C07, C08, C09 Stephen J. “Jack” Loup District 4

Schools: Folsom Elementary, Foldom Junior High, Lee Road Junior High Precincts: 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 207, 301, 302, F01 Charles T. Harrell District 5 Schools: Mandeville Elementary, Mandeville Junior High, Lakeshore High School Precincts: 403, 407, 410, 414, 415, 416, M01A, M02, M03, M07 Sorola “Jody” Palmer District 7 Schools: Bayou Lacombe Middle, Chahta-Ima Elementary, Monteleone Junior High Precincts: 409, 701, 702, 703, 704, 706, 901, 913, M09 Daniel G. Zechenelly District 8 Schools: Creekside Junior High, Pearl River High, Sixth Ward Elementary Continued on Page 24


SCHOOL BOARD Continued from Page 23 Precincts: 501, 503, 601, 602, 603, 604, 605, 606, 902, 903, P01 Michael J. Gambrell District 9 Schools: Clearwood Junior High, Whispering Forest Elementary Precincts: 801, 802, 803, 804, S01, S02, S05 Ronald “Ron” Bettencourtt District 10 Schools: Fontainebleau High, Fontainebleau Junior High, Lake Harbor Middle, Magnolia Trace Elementary, Mandeville Middle, Woodlake Elementary, Marigny Elementary Precincts: 405, 408, 411, 412, 417, 420, M04, M05 Robert R. “Bob” Womack District 11 Schools: Bayou Woods Elementary, Carolyn Park Middle Precincts: 705, 901A, 904A, 904B, 905, 906, 907, 908, 915, S06, S13, S18 James “Ronnie Panks Sr.

District 12 Schools: Abney Elementary, Salmen High Precincts: 909A, 910, 911, S15, S16, S17, S22 John C. Lamarque District 13 Schools: Bonne Ecole Elementary, Florida Avenue Elementary, Northshore High, Slidell High, Slidell Junior High Precincts: 806, 811, 813, S03, S04, S08, S09, S10, S11, S20 Ray A. Alfred District 14 Schools: Alton Elementary, Brock Elementary, Riverside Elementary, Slidell Pathways, St. Tammany Junior High Precincts: 809, 904, 912, 914, S07, S10A, S12, S14, S19, S21 Mary K. Bellisario District 15 Schools: Boyet Junior High, Cypress Cove Elementary, Honey Island Elementary, Little Oak Middle Precincts: 805, 807, 808, 810, 812, 814, 909




Schools continue innovative programs By Debbie Glover St. Tammany Glover Often cited as one of the best schools systems in the state, St. Tammany School Board is not resting on any laurels; they are moving forward with even more innovative programs for the students and professional educators in the parish. Just named as having the top ACT scores in the state, and one of only two systems in the state above the national average, there are some challenges this year due to the economy. Superintendent Gayle Sloan said, “We are in a stable situation fiscally to weather the current economic storm.” The St. Tammany Parish School System may be receiving more funding from the state because enrollment figures, while not complete, show an increase of at least 200 students over last year.In the first week of classes, four additional teachers were hired to fill instructional needs. The successful opening of another school year has included the beginnings of new traditions at two new schools—Lakeshore High School on Louisiana Highway 1088 in Mandeville and Marigny Elementary on Viola Street in Mandeville. Although both schools will not have the full complement of grades or students this year, each one contains excited faculty, staff, students and parents to be in a new facility, begin new traditions and experience new opportunities for their students. In addition to the new openings this year, Sloan said the school system is moving forward with upcoming groundbreakings for two new schools — a new prekindergarten through sixth grade school, Henry Mayfield Elementary, in Slidell; and Joseph B. Lancaster Elementary in


Madisonville that will house second through fifth grades. In addition, Sloan said that Brooks Curriculum Center in Slidell should be completed by May 2010 and the rebuilding of Salmen High School should be ready for the 2010-11 school year. The school system recently received $5 million in stimulus package bonds to renovate Alton Elementary School. There are still ongoing renovations and additions to many other schools using funds from the 2008 bond issue. Sloan said there are a lot of constructions projects for schools in the parish. New programs are beginning this year including the addition of drop out coaches to assist students. Seniors who have had difficulties meeting graduation requirements and GEE will receive coaching as well as ninthgraders who are at risk of dropping out. The purpose of the coaching will be to help students stay on target to progress to the next level. This may include home visits, working with students, teachers and parents, credit Continued on Page 28


SCHOOLS Continued from Page 27 recovery opportunities and online work. Lakeshore High School will house a pilot program of digital classes for English I and world geography. The program will require participating students to have a laptop and a grant has provided a limited number. Other high school principals will be introduced to the program this semester with hopes of starting the program in additional schools in the spring. Next year, the curriculum will be expanded to include American history, Engllish II and sciences. Teachers and technology personnel have written the programs to appeal to the technological savvy generation. The newly instituted career diploma program will not start this year. Sloan said that in order to properly make the program meaningful for students, preparation is needed. She added that correct counseling for each student needs to be included in the program, along with clarification of some issues. The school board may purchase the vo-tech facility currently for sale in Slidell. “It’s a real deal,” Sloan said, “perfect for use as a career technical facility.” She said that there are many ways to approach technical education and it would be a great opportunity for the school system. A reorganization of a leadership program for faculty members who are interested in becoming administrators is also progressing. The LEAD program, or Leading Effective Administrative Develop-

ment, will meet twice a month. Participants will learn the responsibilities of the principal, what exactly a principal is and will obtain field experience and shadow administrators. They will also gain experience in administrative work such as ordering textbooks, serving on disciplinary committees, professional reading and development and generally help them form a vision of the important attributes of an administrator. They will also receive information on what to look for when interviewing potential personnel, the reverse of what most participants in the program would be used to. This program would be a leadin to a parishwide or even a permanent position with the focus on mentoring. Another new program is also being developed, the STAR program. The St. Tammany Advantage Reward program will be an employee discount program meant to encourage employees to shop in the parish. With over 6,000 employees in the system, things like percentage off memberships or discounts will not only help the local retail economy, but it would also serve to keep sales tax in the parish. Sales tax funds provide funding for the school system, so it would be a winning program for all concerned. The program is targeted to begin in January. Sloan said that although Gov. Bobby Jindal is still committed to the University Square project, the budget cuts have postponed the project for now. The school system is able to move forward, but unfortunately the colleges, universities and vocational-technical entities cannot at this time. Programs that were due to start at the learning center will instead be piloted in current schools, with five beginning this year at Lakeshore High School. The programs include advanced CISCO, study of dance, sculpture and two courses in broadcasting. Other programs are currently housed in high schools across the parish, including advanced academic programs and vocational or technical programs.


ST. TAMMANY PARISH PUBLIC SCHOOLS Abita Springs Elementary Grades PK-3 P.O. Box 427; 22410 Level St. Abita Springs 70420 892-8184 Abita Springs Middle Grades 4-6 P.O. Box 217; 72079 Maple St. Abita Springs 70420 892-2070 Abney Elementary School Grades PK-5 825 Kostmayer Ave. Slidell 70458 643-4044 Alton Elementary School Grades PK-5 38276 N. Fifth Ave. Slidell 70460 863-5353 Bayou Lacombe Middle School Grades 4-6 P.O. Box 787; 27527 St. Joseph St. Lacombe 70445 882-5416 Bayou Woods Elementary School Grades PK-3 35614 Liberty Drive Slidell 70460 641-1901 Bonne Ecole Elementary School Grades PK-6 900 Rue Verand Slidell 70458 643-0674 Boyet Junior High School Grades 7-8 59295 Rebel Drive Slidell 70461 643-3775 Brock Elementary Grades PK-5 701 Cleveland Ave. Slidell 70458 643-5166 Carolyn Park Middle School Grades 4-6 35708 Liberty Drive Slidell 70460 643-8593 Chata-Ima Elementary School Grades PK-3 27488 Pichon Road Lacombe 70445 882-7541 Clearwood Junior High School Grades 4-8 130 Clearwood Drive Slidell 70458 641-8200 Covington Elementary School Grades PK-3

325 S. Jefferson St. Covington 70433 892-4311 Covington High School Grades 9-12 73030 Lions Drive Covington 70433 892-3422 Covington Pathways Special 801 N. Tyler St. Covington 70433 898-3314 Creekside Junior High School Grades 6-8 65434 Louisiana Highway 41 Pearl River 70452 863-5882 Cypress Cove Elementary School Grades K-1 540 S. Military Road Slidell 70461 641-3033 Fifth Ward Junior High School Grades PK-8 81419 Louisiana Highway 21 Bush 70431 886-3273 Florida Avenue Elementary School Grades PK-6 342 Florida Ave. Slidell 70458 643-1605 Folsom Elementary School Grades PK-5 82144 Louisiana Highway 25 Folsom 70437 796-3820 Folsom Junior High School Grades 6-8 80355 Hay Hollow Road Folsom 70437 796-3724 Fontainebleau High School Grades 9-12 100 Bulldog Drive Mandeville 70471 892-7112 Fontainebleau Junior High School Grades 7-8 100 Hurricane Alley Mandeville 70471 875-7501 Honey Island Elementary Grades 2-3 500 S. Military Road Slidell 70461 641-3557 Lake Harbor Middle School Grades 4-6 1700 Viola Street

Mandeville 70471 674-4440 Lakeshore High School Grades 9-10 26301 La. Hwy. 1088 Mandeville, La. 70448 624-5046 Lee Road Junior High School Grades PK-8 79131 Louisiana Highway 40 Covington 70433 892-3636 Little Oak Middle School Grades 4-6 59241 Rebel Drive Slidell 70461 641-6510 Lyon Elementary School Grades PK-3 1615 N. Florida St. Covington 70433 892-0869 Madisonville Elementary School Grades K-3 317 Louisiana Highway 1077 Madisonville 70447 845-3671 Madisonville Junior High School Grades 4-8 P.O. Box 850; 106 Cedar St. Madisonville 70447 845-3355 Magnolia Trace Elementary School Grades K-3 1405 Louisiana Highway 1088 Mandeville 70448 626-8238 Mandeville Elementary School Grades K-3 519 Messena St. Mandeville 70448 626-3950 Mandeville High School Grades 9-12 1 Skipper Drive Mandeville 70471 626-5225 Mandeville Junior High School Grades 7-8 639 Carondelet St. Mandeville 70448 626-4428 Mandeville Middle School Grades 4-6 2525 Soult St. Mandeville 70448 626-8778 Marigny Elementary K-T1 1715 Viola St. Mandeville, La. 60448 674-3011 L.P. Monteleone Junior High

School Grades 7-8 63000 Blue Marlin Drive Mandeville 70448 951-8088 Northshore High School Grades 9-12 100 Panther Drive Slidell 70461 649-6400 Operation Jumpstart Alternative School 6-12 23515 U.S. Highway 190 Building C-1 Mandeville 70448 727-1062 Pearl River High School Grades 9-12 39110 Rebel Lane Pearl River 70452 863-2591 Pine View Middle School Grades 4-6 1200 W. 27th Ave. Covington 70434 892-6204 Pitcher Junior High School Grades 7-8 415 S. Jefferson Covington, LA 70433 892-3021 Pontchartrain Elementary School Grades K-3 1500 W. Causeway Approach Mandeville 70471 626-3748 Riverside Elementary School Grades PK-5 38480 Sullivan Drive Pearl River 70452 863-3141 Salmen High School Grades 9-12

300 Spartan Drive Slidell 70458 643-7359 Sixth Ward Elementary School Grades PK-5 72360 Louisiana Highway 41 Pearl River 70452 863-7126 Slidell High School Grades 9-12 No. 1 Tiger Drive Slidell 70458 643-2992 Slidell Junior High School Grades 6-8 333 Pennsylvania Ave. Slidell 70458 641-5914 Slidell Pathways Special 38275 Fifth Ave. Slidell 70459 641-5729 St. Tammany Junior High School Grades 6-8 701 Cleveland Ave. Slidell 70458 643-1592 Tchefuncte Middle School Grades 4-6 1530 W. Causeway Approach Mandeville 70471 626-7118 Whispering Forest Elementary Grades PK-3 300 Spiehler Road Slidell 70458 641-3400 Woodlake Elementary School Grades K-3 1620 Livingston Mandeville 70448 626-8842


Marching to the beat

The St. Paul’s Marching Wolves performed at the Louisiana Tailgate and Barbeque Festival Aug. 21 at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans. The festival celebrates all things football.


PRIVATE/PAROCHIAL SCHOOLS Archbishop Hannan High School Grades 8-12 71324 Hwy. 1077 Covington 249-6363 and 871-9365

Grades PK-8 363 Thompson Road Slidell 70458 641-3382

Cedarwood School Grades Preschool through 7 607 Heaven’s Drive Mandeville 70471 845-7111

Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic School Grades PK-7 1501 W. Causeway Approach Mandeville 70471 674-2466

Calvary Baptist School Grades Preschool to 8 1615 Old Spanish Trail Slidell 70458 643-7224

Northlake Christian School Grades newborn through 12 70104 Wolverine Drive Covington 70433 635-0400

Christ Episcopal School Grades PK-K 120 S. New Hampshire Covington 70433 892-9156

Our Lady of Lourdes 345 Westchester Place Slidell 70458 643-3230

Christ Episcopal School Grades 1-8 80 Christwood Blvd. Covington 70433 871-9902 Christ Episcopal Upper School Grade 9 80 Christwood Blvd. Covington 70433 871-9902 First Baptist Christian School Grades 1-12 4141 Pontchartrain Drive Slidell 70458 643-3725 Holy Trinity Lutheran School Grades PK-3 1 N. Marigold Drive Covington 70433 893-3970 Kehoe-France Northshore School-Camp 2 years old to seventh grade 25 Patricia Drive Covington 70433 892-4415 Lake Castle Private School Grades PK-8 235 Louisiana Highway 21 Madisonville 70447 845-3537 Lake Castle North Private School

Our Lady of the Lake School Grades PK-7 316 Lafitte St. Mandeville 70448 626-5678, 626-9405 Pope John Paul II High School 1901 Jaguar Drive Slidell 649-0914 Slidell Christian Academy Grades K-8 59344 N. Pearl Drive Slidell 70461 641-3785 St. Margaret Mary School 1050 Robert Blvd. Slidell 70458 643-4612 St. Paul’s School Grades 8-12 boys only 917 S. Jahncke Ave. Covington 70433 892-3200 St. Peter School Grades PK-7 228 E. Temperance St. Covington 70433 892-1831 St. Scholastica Academy Grades 8-12 girls only 122 S. Massachusetts Covington 70433 892-2540


ST. TAMMANY PARISH GOVERNMENT Access St. Tammany P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-5243 (985) 898-2798 Fax Email Airport, St. Tammany Regional P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2700 (985) 898-5237 Fax Animal Services Dr. Brent Robbins, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 809-0183 (985) 809-0284 Fax Arts Commission Daná LaFonta, Coordinator P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-3011 (985) 898-2798 Fax Assistant CAO Kim Salter P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2445 (985) 875-2603 Fax

Chief Administrative Officer Bill Oiler P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2445 (985) 875-2603 Fax Community Action Sorola “Jody” Palmer, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 893-3923 (985) 646-2090 (985)643-5843 Fax

Drainage District No. 4 P.O. Box 1149 Slidell, LA 70459 (985) 643-4243

Community Wellness Center 1505 North Flordia Covington, LA 70433 (985) 871-6030

Environmental Services Greg Gorden, Special Assistant to the President P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2535 (985) 898-2523 Fax

Coroner Dr. Peter Galvan 550 Brownswitch Road Slidell, La 70458 Phone: (985) 781-1150 Fax: (985) 781-1148 Cultural & Governmental Affairs Suzanne Parsons Stymiest, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-5243 or (985) 898-5243 (985) 898-2798 Fax Drainage District No. 2 2000 Old Spanish Trail Slidell, LA 70458 (985) 643-6473

Engineering Joe Gustafson, Director Joe Shoemaker, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2552 (985) 898-5205 Fax

Facility Management Bruce Crouch, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2792 (985) 898-3073 Fax Finance Leslie Long, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2513 (985) 898-5238 Fax Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness Dexter Accardo, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 867-2359 (985) 898-3030 Fax

Social Services John Tobin, Administrative Liaison P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-3074 (985) 898-3030 Fax St. Tammany Parish Council Mike Sevante, Council Administrator P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2591 (985) 898-2593 Fax St. Tammany Parish Economic and Industrial Development District (STEDF) 21454 Koop Drive, Suite 2-E1 Mandeville, LA 70471 (985)-809-7874

Executive Assistant to the Parish President James Smith P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2362 (985) 898-5237 Fax

Management Information Systems Janet Pike, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2448

St. Tammany Parish Slidell Health Unit 105 Med Center Drive Slidell, LA 70461 (985) 646-6445

Executive Counsel Robert Barnett P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2362 (985) 898-5237 Fax

Mosquito Abatement Chuck Palmisano P.O. Box 696 Slidell, LA 70459 (985) 643-5050 (985) 649-7325 Fax

Tammany Trace Lisa Maddox, Director P.O.Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 867-9490 (985) 871-6971 Fax

New Directions 2025 Gibb Farrish, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 875-2602 (985) 898-5237 Fax

Water District No. 16 Dickie Jenkins, Captain P.O.Box 1120 Covington , LA 70434 (985) 892-8181 Fax(985) 898-2582

Permits & Regulatory, Dept. of Denise Jobe, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2574 or (985) 6464166 (985) 898-2785 Fax

Waterway Safety Committee Bradley Crump, Lieutenant 81006 Stricker Rd. Bush, LA 70431 (985) 886-3632

Planning Sidney Fontenot, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2529 (985) 898-3003 Fax Public Works Shannon Davis, Director P.O. Box 628 Covington, LA 70434 (985) 898-2557 (985) 898-5227 Fax

Wellness Center 1505 North Flordia Covington, LA 70433 (985) 871-6030 Wildlife & Fisheries 520 Old Spanish Trail Slidell, LA 70458 (225) 765-2800 1-800-442-2511 Toll Free


Cultural districts spur economy across parish By Debbie Glover St. Tammany Parish Cities across the parish are participating in and benefiting from the cultural economy program started in 2007. Mandeville, Lacombe, Madisonville, Slidell, Covington and Abita Springs all have designated cultural districts that are able to sell original artwork without paying sales tax. In addition to the tax-exempt original art purchases, preservationists and those wanting the restore historic buildings also get a tax break on buildings 50 years old or older. While the artwork may be tax-free, the visitors often make other purchases and visit businesses not covered by the tax exemptions. This helps merchants and the cities alike while creating interest in the area as a destination for consumers. The influx of more tourists and visitors means more customers at local restaurants and other shops, which stimulates the local economy and add to the areas’ revenues. Not all art qualifies; in fact, there are stringent guidelines. The artwork must be original, one of a kind visual art, conceived and made by hand by the artist or under his direction and not intended for mass production. For example-visual arts and crafts, including but not limited to drawing, paint-

ing, sculpture, clay, ceramics, fiber, glass, leather, metal, paper, wood or mixed media. Some limited editions prints may qualify if they are limited in number to fewer than 100. Art lovers get to own an original as part of their home. And art businesses profit from other sales from customers they may not have had—a winning stimulus for local community economies. Developed by Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu, the cultural district should help revitalize a community while providing a sense of community. Other goals for the initiative include involving residents of the area, stimulating the economy and capitalize on local, cultural, economic and social assets. Property values can also reap a positive reward by creating growth and revitalizing an area. One of the largest art shows in the area is the Three Rivers Art Festival in Covington, held in November. The juried show has over 100 participants from across the country in every medium imaginable. Slidell also has a growing art and cultural district with many events throughout the year, including a special event premiering this fall. A trip to some of the local galleries is almost like visiting a modern art museum, with a variety of styles and talents on view.

Above, Edward Johnson, left, and John Catalanotto hand a basket of flower and plants to Kalaonga Siamwiza to hang on a lamp post on First Street in Olde Towne. Below, Jann Stevens enjoyed the works of Dianne Parks on the banks of the Tchefuncte River under the sprawling oak trees.

Danny Saladino, owner of Gallery NU on Boston Street in Covington, says the tax incentives on local art purchases are a “deal maker.” (File Photos)


Inside St. Tammany  

Inside St. Tammany

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