Gov. John Bel Edwards issued a statement on the ruling by the Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeal upholding his appointment of Ronald Lattier as a member of the Red River Waterway Commission representing Caddo Parish. In 2018, Gov. Edwards appointed Mr. Lattier, who was also confirmed by the Louisiana State Senate, to serve out the remainder of the term for the seat that had become vacant after the passing of Mr. Mickey Prestridge. His term was set to expire July 1, 2021.
The appointment was challenged by Carolyn Prator and Attorney General Jeff Landry. Today’s ruling dismissed the lawsuit, keeping Mr. Lattier on the Commission. “I’m grateful to the Third Circuit for this ruling that throws out the Attorney General’s lawsuit and upholds my appointments to the Red River Waterway Commission,” said Gov. Edwards.
“This case was completely without merit from the very beginning, based on a manufactured argument and motivated by the political agenda of the Attorney General. I had already appointed Mrs. Prator to the Caddo Levee District Board in 2016, and as the courts found, the letters nominating her for the commission were sent after the time period in which they should have been submitted.
Mr. Lattier, who is from Caddo, had also been nominated and was serving as an at-large-member on the commission when the Caddo seat became unexpectedly available. There was no question he was well versed in the issues and had the knowledge and experience needed to carry out the responsibilities of that position. His appointment allowed Caddo to maintain its same representation as it had for two decades. Further, he has demonstrated that he was the correct choice by his faithful service on the commission. Not only that, but I appointed a veteran from Rapides Parish to fill the at-large-seat in order to help restore balance to the commission, a commitment I had made back in 2017. I am pleased that this matter has been settled and that this is no longer an issue for Mr. Lattier or a distraction for the commission.”