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Story Archives: New terms, new hope in Concordia
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|New terms, new hope in Concordia|
Three mayors, 15 aldermen, two police chiefs, the clerk of court and the sheriff began four-year terms in Concordia Parish on Tuesday.
In Ferriday and Clayton, there was a changing of the guard. Clayton voters elected Rydell Turner as mayor and Floyd L. Barber, Carl Ray Thompson, Irene Jefferson, Willie Evans and Sandy Clayton as aldermen. Clarence Skipper is also beginning another term as police chief.
Turner says his top priorities will entail developing recreation programs for young people and seeking grants to support those programs. Skipper says he'll continue to call on the public to help improve the safety of the town's neighborhoods, but he realizes "it's going take everybody pulling together for one cause."
In Ferriday, Glen McGlothin returned to office after a four-year absence. This will be his fourth term.
McGlothin has pledged to revamp the town's water system, which has been a problem the Ferriday community for years. He has already set a new direction for the Ferriday Police Department, the focus of much negative attention during the past four years.
Five former town police officers were indicted by a parish Grand Jury last spring and the thousands of traffic tickets written during the past four years labeled Ferriday as a "speed trap" in the eyes and minds of scores of people from across the state.
Last week, McGlothin appointed Kenneth Hedrick as police chief, a man with four decades of experience as a lawman and as a wildlife enforcement agent. Hedrick, who previously served as the town's police chief, says that over the next four years he will "focus on decreasing the number of burglaries and thefts within our town and strike hard on the area drug dealers."
Ferriday aldermen include incumbents Johnnie Brown, Gloria Lloyd, and Jerome Harris and newcomers Stepper Banks and Sommer Lewis.
In Vidalia, Mayor Hyram Copeland and a veteran council returned to office. The development of the town's riverfront and the growth of the town's business community have served as shining examples of leadership that outshines the leadership many Louisiana communities strive to achieve.
Copeland, who is beginning his fourth term, says the town will move forward with the development of its port facility and marina. He says other industrial projects are in the works and residential and commercial development will continue.
Ronnie G. "Tapper" Hendricks is the new police chief in Vidalia. He promises the public will see more visible patrols, daily contact with the public and follow-up information on complaints.
Vidalia aldermen include Ricky Knapp, Maureen Saunders, Vernon Stevens, Tron McCoy and John Betts.
Parishwide, Clerk of Court Clyde Ray Webber and Sheriff Randy Maxwell began new terms, too, on Tuesday.
In reflecting upon the men and women who took their oaths of office this week, the prospect of the parish enjoying solid leadership over the next four years, by and large, looks good.
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