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|Two police jurors tapped for lobbying trip|
Two Ouachita Parish Police jurors will accompany Monroe Chamber of Commerce officials later next month for lobbying efforts in Washington, D.C.
Police jurors Pat Moore and Charles Jackson were selected by their fellow police jurors Monday to make the trip. The police jury approved signed off on the Washington lobbying trip at its regular meeting.
Local officials plan to visit Washington Jan. 27-28 for the annual Washington Mardi Gras celebration, which is hosted by the state's congressional delegation. It's a three-day event in which Mardi Gras is celebrated on Capitol Hill.
While in Washington, Moore and Jackson plan to promote local projects and seek funding for those projects.
"Some of us have met with the governor, and from what we hear, there's really not going to be a lot of new capital outlay projects because there is a backlog and they're trying to get those done," Moore said. "So, we might need to start looking at other dollars. The president-elect is talking about a stimulus package and construction and bridges, and I thought this would be an opportunity for us to go with the Monroe chamber. This is an opportunity that we might can look at federal dollars."
She suggested the police jury narrow its funding wish list to the top three projects in the parish.
"We're interested in the drainage problems, streets and some other things, so that's my reason for wanting to go," she said.
Police juror Mack Calhoun, who has attended Washington Mardi Gras with former police juror King Dawson, agreed with Moore that police jurors needed to attend the event to seek funding for local projects. However, he warned Moore that during recent trips, he felt he was not allowed to speak and was overshadowed by the chamber group.
"I agree with everything you say, except one thing," Calhoun told Moore. "Last time I went, the chamber wouldn't let me talk. They didn't let me say a word, and I don't like that. But Mrs. Moore, the money is there, and maybe we can figure out a way to get it."
The police jury agreed to send two jurors to Washington, D.C. at a cost not exceeding $5,000. Money will come from the police jury's general fund.