BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The two candidates for EBR mayor-president are wasting no time trying to win over voters.
Sharon Weston-Broome and Bodi White debated before Baton Rouge reporters on Monday, November 21 at the weekly press club luncheon. Two candidates with decades of experience in state and local governments have committed to play nice, but Broome and White are not holding back talking
about their differences, especially when it comes to unity.
"I'm disappointed that my friend and colleague has not done that as it relates to the pull out of St. George. It has not demonstrated unity it has demonstrated division," Broome said.
"There she goes again talking about attacking the people in south Baton Rouge. Those folks just wanted better schools for their kids," White said.
The future mayor-president will be charged with keeping the peace when the U.S. Department of Justice returns its decision in regards to the police shooting of Alton Sterling. That person is also responsible for hiring the next police chief.
"I am looking for someone who is forward thinking, open-minded, who has established experience, someone who is inspiring, because I believe that is vitally important as well," Broome said.
"I want to see a chief that exemplifies my work ethic, who wants to work with everyone in the parish," White said.
Broome and White both said they want to give police officers raises and are against residency requirements. Both candidates committed to being visible in the community in times of disaster, such as the August flood. They also elaborated on their plans to rebuild Baton Rouge.
"I think it's important in the mayor-president's office that we have a chief resiliency officer. That person can be responsible for helping to plan and develop programs and initiatives," Broome said.
"We are going to get CDBG [community gr ant] dollars, and I'm going to run that through some different organizations and revitalize north Baton Rouge. That was flooded and needs to be torn down," White said.
Broome and White also want entrepreneurs to give north Baton Rouge a chance. Both candidates said traffic is their main concern and they are in the process of developing plans to help East Baton Rouge move faster.
Each candidate also recently picked up big endorsements. The Baton Rouge Police Union has backed White, while Governor Edwards said he supports Broome.