Has St. Martin Parish President Cedars racked up massive legal fees obstructing minor initiatives like Broussard’s only to open up “Pandora’s box” for yet more legal fees?

St. Martin Parish resident Christopher Decuir.

To say that some readers, particularly in St. Martin Parish, were stunned with our most recent feature entailing St. Martin Parish President Chester Cedars would be a huge understatement.  We reported that the full St. Martin Parish Government (SMPG) Council will consider Broussard’s zoning request on Tuesday; however, with that being Mardi Gras, the date was pushed back by one day to Wednesday, March 2, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.  We’ll certainly be there to film whatever transpires.

We have received quite a bit of correspondence regarding the sheer volume of legal fees being incurred by SMPG entailing matters such as Broussard’s matter and the more widely known Champagne Swamp Boat Tours.  In that feature, SMPG President Chester Cedars states, “I believe the trial court was wrong!”

Cedars’ thoughts notwithstanding, he was unsuccessful upon his appeal of the lower court’s ruling in favor of Champagne.  One interesting assertion made in that litigation on behalf of Champagne Boat Tours by Gibson Law Firm (the same one whom Broussard retained and whom we both praised and lambasted on the first link to this feature) follows:

Appellees (Champagne  Boat Tours) assert that the ordinance was “unconstitutional as it was haphazardly thrown together, is vague and ambiguous and incomplete insofar as referenced map, policies and procedures outlined in the Ordinance were never followed or performed.” Furthermore, Appellees (Champagne Boat Tours) assert that the police jury failed to support the enactment of the ordinance with a vote of the people or an act of the legislature.

In sharp contrast to the Champagne Boat Tours litigation in which Cedars first served as legal counsel to represent SMPG and later testified in his capacity as SMPG President, nobody has successfully asserted that Broussard has:  1) charged anyone one dime for placing any material on his 33-acre property, or 2) has constructed any building on the property.

There certainly were accusations to that effect (especially the former), and the individual making the accusation regarding Broussard, “charging others to dump on his property,” LSP Trooper Scott Lopez, is very likely to be called upon to provide the proof of the allegation he made with a video camera running.

We sure hope for his sake that he has more proof beyond relying upon any representations made to him by Blake Dubroc, whom he actively recruited to assist him with his efforts to shut Broussard’s farming operations down.

Additionally, Lopez said that, while it is, “a topic for another day,” he made it clear his discontent with Broussard’s father, who lives next door to Lopez, having cows on his property.

Lopez’s bold accusation regarding Broussard charging for others to place materials on his property notwithstanding, Broussard emphatically denies that he has ever charged a dime for anyone to place anything on his property.

At any rate, the vast majority of the January 6, 2022 meeting of the SMPG Zoning Commission was comprised of:

  • Claims Broussard is “acting illegally” lodged by LSP Trooper Scott Lopez (which as we pointed out would have required complicity on the part of SMPG officials since they gave Broussard their full blessings to resume ALL of his vegetative debris hauling effective September 14, 2021) and
  • Commentary by some folk who posted the utterly brilliant posts on Facebook which we provided in our last feature (linked above).

Nevertheless, there were two neighbors of Broussard’s property who made what we assess as fairly sound arguments.  The first, Christopher Decuir, openly asked Parish Zoning Coordinator Morgan Allemond if he would have to seek permission from the Zoning Commission to have, “a barn and a few cows?”  Allemond’s response:  “You do.  Mr. Broussard did, so you do!”  Decuir then responded that, “Mr. Cedars said that he has no problem with cows.”

That commentary by Decuir goes straight to the heart of what has been alleged in pleadings filed by Broussard in the litigation filed against him by SMPG.  Specifically, the Pre Trial Memorandum filed by Broussard states that Broussard is being “targeted” by Cedars!

Plenty of folk already reached that conclusion upon seeing Cedars’ grilling of Broussard regarding any bailing of hay on his 33-acre property, to wit:

 

Another neighbor, Keith Landry, after first expressing concern that “Pandora’s box” has been opened by SMPG’s litigation against Broussard, subsequently indicated that he is concerned that anytime anyone wants to do something similar to Broussard, it’s going to lead to, “this taking place.”

The beautiful thing about a camera is that it catches all of the commentary we’ve just summarized, so let’s take just three (3) minutes to have a peek at these two gentlemen making their statements to the SMPG Council Zoning Commission on January 6, 2022, shall we (we also direct viewers’ attention to the fact that Allemond is having to do as she so often had to do and seek for the anti-Broussard mob to quiet down)?:

Decuir and Landry make statements before the SMPG Zoning Commission on January 6, 2022.

Plenty of folk have expressed their concerns (including attorneys who want to examine legal invoices pertaining to all the Parish’s legal fees over the years) about the massive legal fees Cedars is racking up pursuing matters similar to Broussard’s.  In our last feature, we indicated that, as an accommodation to those attorneys, we scanned thousands of pages of legal invoices back in October of 2021.  We received calls last week asking if we could expedite having a webpage up for easy examination and scrutiny of those legal fees, and we’re happy to announce that the webpage of SMPG legal fees for the last six years (through October of 2021) is now available..  In fact,           we’re going to copy and paste its contents into this feature:

St. Martin Parish Government Legal Related Invoices

2016 – October of 2021

Invoices Post-2018:

1.  Gold Weems 2021

2.  Neuner-Pate 2021

3.  Foley-Judell 2021

4.  Lee Durio 2021

5.  Allan Durand 2021

6.  Keith Thibodeaux 2020

7.  Neuner-Pate 2020

8.  Foley-Judell 2020

9.  Lee Durio 2020

10.  Allan Durand 2020

11.  Chester Cedars 2020

12.  Keith Thibodeaux 2019

13.  16th JDC 2019

14.  Neuner-Pate 2019

15.  Foley-Judell 2019

16.  Rebecca Borel 2019

17.  Lee Durio 2019

18.  Allan Durand 2019

Invoices Pre-2019:

1.  16th JDC (DA expenses)

2.  Chester Cedars (General Counsel)

3.  Foley-Judell (GO Bonds)

4.  Keith Thibodeaux (Adult Drug Court)

5.  Neuner-Pate (Defense Counsel)

6.  Oats-Marino (First Circuit overturning of FAS Environmental Services’ DNR Permit)

Those attorneys who contacted us (as well as anyone else in the world) are welcome to examine all of the above legal invoices until their hearts are content!

In the last week alone, we’ve been alerted to several VERY intriguing matters entailing SMPG operations.  Normally, our blog has focused on Louisiana State governmental operations; however, as strong free market advocates, we can’t resist the incredible opportunities that SMPG President Chester Cedars and the SMPG Council have afforded us.

After all, St. Martin Parish is a relatively small community.  Nevertheless, its leadership demonstrates incredibly stiff opposition to individual rights which, in our minds, seem to harm nobody.  Such actions represent what we believe to be nothing short of exploitation by SMPG President Cedars to provide some attorneys with a steady and reliable source of cash flows.

Accordingly, look for us to have more features on SMPG governmental operations by attorneys and others in St. Martin Parish in the near future.

In closing, if anyone drives in St. Martin Parish and isn’t happy with the conditions of its roads, that person can take great comfort from the fact that some attorneys have been richly rewarded compliments of SMPG President Chester Cedars’ relentless pursuit of folk like Broussard, with whom he finds disfavor and makes little secret of that fact!

We look forward to providing coverage (to certainly include videos) of Wednesday’s SMPG Council meeting!

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