ASCENSION PARISH, La. (WAFB) - The race for Ascension Parish President is now set.
Incumbent Parish President Kenny Matassa announced Thursday he will not run for another term. However, a last-minute surprise addition to the crowded field has people talking.
"It didn't come as a complete surprise that a fourth name emerged, but nobody saw 'that somebody' entering the race," said Wade Petite, with Pelican Post News.
That somebody is Ascension Parish Sheriff Bobby Webre's brother, Rick Webre.
He's the now former Parish Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Director.
The sheriff tells WAFB he learned of his brother running the same morning his brother announced he was entering the race. Sheriff Webre says he is focusing on his own election campaign only.
In a statement Sheriff Webre said “I immediately met with him and let him know that I do not support his decision to run."
”That’s pretty bold. A lot of people think that the effect on the Sheriff’s race may be even more pronounced," said Petite. Webre joins a big field of candidates eyeing to be the Parish’s chief executive, including Clint Cointment, who barely lost in the runoff with incumbent Kenny Matassa in 2015 along with Ricky Diggs and Murphy Painter.
“How it’s going to affect the Parish President [race], like I said, I think this certainly throws it into a runoff without any question,” said Petit.
People chimed in on WAFB’s Facebook page on the sheriff’s disapproval for his brother’s campaign, one person saying “Wow Thanksgiving is going to be awkward in that house.“
”The real speculation right now is what motivated Rick Webre to join the parish president’s race,” Petit said.
Out of the 4 candidates, whoever is elected Parish President, will have to show voters their stance on a few key issues, Petite says.
“There’s no secret what’s really irritating people, okay," said Petit. “Two things stand out: traffic, sitting in traffic and worrying about your house flooding whenever we get a hard rain.”
The Sheriff also saying in his statement that he has no plans on endorsing any other candidates in any other race. He says that he’s fully focused on his election bid which will be against Byron Hill and Moses Black Jr.
Election Day is October 12.