Port Allen leaders fear budget delays will directly affect city workers

Full house committee meeting in Port Allen with Mayor Deedy Slaughter.
Full house committee meeting in Port Allen with Mayor Deedy Slaughter.

PORT ALLEN, LA (WAFB) - It was another full house for a committee meeting in Port Allen Wednesday, just days after Mayor Deedy Slaughter vetoed an approved city budget.

"Normal operation is taking place every day in the city of Port Allen," said Slaughter.

A recall election for Slaughter is just over one week away and the city budget is still not approved. In fact, Chief Financial Officer Audrey McCain says if no budget is passed soon than employee payroll will not be guaranteed after the first week of December. She adds the Port Allen Fire Department could be the first group affected due to emergency calls and overtime. That is a scenario Councilman R.J. Loupe says is hard a pill to swallow.

"The main thing I'm concerned about if we get a total default before the first of the year our employees won't get a salary, that's my big worry. Other than that we can go on but we can't with because they have to have an income," said Loupe.

Loupe and Councilmen Hugh Riviere and Gary Hubble presented and voted to approve a budget on October 23. The budget passed by a 3-2 vote with Brandon Brown and Ray Helen Lawrence voting against it. A 4-1 vote is required to overturn Slaughter's veto.

"As written right now you're not prepared to override the veto?" Brown was asked.

"No. Not at the moment, no," answered Brown.

"I'm not saying exactly whether but I know there are some things that we need to deal with," said Lawrence.

"I feel that it will be resolved by the end of the year. I'm hoping and planning that me and the council can get together and negotiate," said Slaughter.

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