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Parish councilman renews call for Matassa's resignation

7 months 5 days 8 hours ago Monday, March 13 2017 Mar 13, 2017 March 13, 2017 7:00 PM March 13, 2017 in News
Source: WBRZ

GONZALES- A stalwart opponent of Ascension Parish President Kenny Matassa plans to officially call for the leader's resignation at Thursday's parish council meeting.

Councilman Daniel "Doc" Satterlee had the resolution ready Monday, saying Matassa can't be an effective leader with a bribery indictment hanging over his head.

"I have to question how effective he can be with leadership and issues that are so vitally important to our parish," Satterlee said.

It's the second time the councilman tried to push a similar resolution since audio tapes first surfaced in August purportedly showing Matassa and businessman Olin Berthelot offered to bribe Gonzales city council candidate Wayne Lawson to drop out of the 2015 race. Satterlee's previous attempt never made it on the agenda.

"We need to be about the business of this parish and we need to move ahead quickly and effectively and the best way we can is to pass this resolution," Satterlee said.

WBRZ asked all of Satterlee's council colleagues Monday if they will vote for his resolution. Council members Oliver Joseph, Bill Dawson, Randy Clouatre, John Cagnolatti and Benny Johnson did not respond.

Dempsey Lambert said Satterlee was "out of order" for not approaching him and his colleagues about the resolution first. Travis Turner said he would vote against it because Matassa is "innocent until proven guilty."

Finally, Aaron Lawler, Teri Casso and Todd Lambert all said they would vote for some form of "no confidence" resolution. However, Lawler said the resolution would have "absolutely no effect" to force Matassa out of office.

WBRZ asked Matassa's administration Monday if the parish president intends to step down or play a smaller role since his indictment. His office declined an interview Monday but spokesperson Martin McConnell wrote in an email:

"President Matassa remains Parish President. He is at work, holding meetings, working on various projects, and keeping a normal schedule."

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