Future of Head Start declared soon

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By Carolyn Roy, carolyn@natchitochestimes.com Parish President Rick Nowlin hopes to have news about the fate of Head Start next week. At the Parish Council meeting Monday, he said a Head Start close out team will visit next week and possibly disclose the name of the new grantee. So far, Head Start headquarters in Dallas has given him no information. He will release it as soon as they do.

Nowlin was disappointed that the Parish Council would not pass a resolution to pay $18,000 to the Natchitoches Community Alliance for economic development services. The total was for two years dues. Its goal is to consolidate economic development efforts with one contact, Director Tony Davis. Last year, the group had 33 businesses consider the parish. Nowlin said the Parish had helped create the group and now was going to walk away.

“It’s outrageous,” he said. The Parish is not contractually obligated to the group that includes Northwestern State and the City. Council member Doug deGraffenreid said, “They can’t do economic development when we have sorry roads…It’s a gamble we don’t need to take.” The council agreed to not table the resolution but postpone it to be brought up again.

The council took the following action:

•Reappointed Jan Frederick and appointed Briarwood curator Richard Johnson to the Natchitoches Parish Tourist Commission

•Did not appoint Mike Newton to replace Roger Williams on the Natchitoches Parish Hospital Service District Board; there was no second to the motion to appoint Newton.

•Authorized Nowlin to acquire credit card from Exchange Bank in name of Natchitoches Parish Government’

•Authorized LCDBG regulations including citizen complaint officer, citizen participation requirements, procurement policy

•Named Natchitoches Times official Parish Journal

•Awarded contract for courthouse ADA parking improvements to Page Builders LLC for $6,450

•Approved six-month extension of contract with Waste Connections for use of transfer station at landfill

•Adopted ordinance to rezone From R-2 Residential for multi-family to R-1 Residential District for single family, six lots at Angler’s Paradise Park Subdivision on Hampton Road

•Changed I-A industrial agriculture to B-1 Business for commercial to be reintroduced and renoticed; for RV park behind 4-Way grocery in Natchez

•Zoning change from RHM-1 residence to R-3 for multi family residences at 761 Hwy 504