A nominating process that is likely to end with the ouster of two prominent supporters of a local levee board’s suit against almost 100 oil and gas companies will get underway Friday as a committee of engineers, academics and policy experts begins poring over a half-dozen applications from those seeking seats on the board.At least they're up front about whose side they're on.
Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East President Tim Doody and Vice President John Barry, whose terms have expired, each face two challengers seeking their spots on the board. State law requires the nominating committee, which holds its first meeting today, to recommend two people for each slot to Gov. Bobby Jindal.
While several board members have kept their thoughts on the recently filed suit private, the Jindal administration has been sharply critical of it. Administration officials have said a candidate’s support or rejection of the suit — which potentially seeks billions in damages from energy companies for the destruction of coastal wetlands — will be a key factor in the appointments.
“To be very clear, the governor has said that the lawsuit is a litmus test. Period,” said Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority Chairman Garret Graves, who has been the administration’s chief spokesman in criticizing the lawsuit.
Friday, September 13, 2013
It's been fun
The process of undoing the levee board reforms begins today.