ASCENSION PARISH, La. (WAFB) - Former Ascension Parish director of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (OHSEP), Rick Webre, shocked many when he stepped down from his longtime position in order to run for parish president earlier in 2019. Webre had a successful tenure at OHSEP. In 2011, he received the President’s Award, the highest award given by the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Association.
Now that he’s lost the election, will Webre try to return to his old $96,907 per year job as OHSEP director?
“I’m keeping all my options open, but no offers have been made,” Webre told WAFB Thursday, Oct. 17.
Webre came in last place in the four-person race on Saturday, Oct. 12. He and third-place finisher, Ricky Diggs, have endorsed first-place finisher, Clint Cointment. Cointment and Murphy Painter will face each other in a runoff Nov. 16.
“Webre, at the 11th hour, ran on a qualifications platform and has now endorsed the candidate with no qualifications to be parish president,” Painter said Thursday. “I can only assume he has been offered that job or another for his endorsement. I will keep an open mind and hire the best-qualified person for that job when the time comes along with all other administration positions, which have not been promised to anyone at this time. I hold no bias to Webre,” Murphy said.
Cointment denies that any jobs have been promised to anyone.
“It is humbling to have not only Rick Webre’s support, but also Ricky Diggs',” Cointment said Thursday. “I appreciate their endorsement and that they both ran such clean, issues-oriented campaigns. As yet, no decisions have been made as to any position in my administration, including OHSEP director.”
Cointment took home 42% of Saturday’s vote, almost twice that of Painter’s 22%.