Celebrating MLK Day!

The Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Committee of Lafayette presents Living the Dream: “Uplifting Ourselves through Faith”. This year’s MLK Weekend festivities offers a host of educational, cultural, and entertaining events that are sure to bring our community together to celebrate the life of Dr. King and the movement he started. Below you will find a schedule of events happening on Monday, January 16th at the Martin Luther King Recreation Center.




I hope to see you sometime this weekend! Should you have any questions about the events of this weekend, call my office and we should be able to provide answers!



Lafayette Office

Legislative Assistant: Phyllis Angelle Roy

Phone: 337.267.7520


Opelousas Office

Director of Operations: Anthony Daniel

Phone: 337.948.0306

Important Information as Tax Season Approaches

For immediate release by the Louisiana Department of Revenue:

Louisiana state income tax filing begins Monday, January 23

Enhanced security measures in place to protect taxpayers from fraud

BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) will begin accepting 2016 state individual income tax returns on Monday, January 23, the same date that the IRS begins accepting federal returns. On that date, LDR will begin accepting returns filed electronically at www.revenue.louisiana.gov/fileonline and through third-party commercial software, along with paper returns submitted in person and through the mail.


Also on January 23, taxpayers can begin downloading paper tax forms from the LDR website, but all taxpayers are encouraged to file electronically for the fastest, most error-free return processing.


The state individual income tax filing deadline is Monday, May 15.


LDR begins this tax season with a focus on protecting taxpayers and state government against fraud.


Over the past three years, LDR has saved taxpayers more than $50 million through its tax fraud prevention initiative, with millions more recovered through restitution. Dozens of fraud suspects have been arrested.


The enhanced security measures in place to detect and stop fraud have increased the time it takes to process tax refunds. For returns filed electronically, refund processing could take as long as 60 days in some cases. Some taxpayers filing paper returns could wait as long as 14 weeks for their refunds.


Additional and unnecessary refund delays can be expected if taxpayers fail to keep their most current contact information on file with LDR, including name, address and telephone number. Taxpayers who have moved in the past year, including those displaced by the 2016 floods, should visit www.revenue.louisiana.gov/addresschange.


Tips for Taxpayers


LDR recommends the following steps to ensure the fastest, most accurate tax return and refund processing:


  • File electronically – The expected refund processing time for returns filed electronically is up to 60 days; for paper returns, expect to wait 12 to 14 weeks.
  • Taxpayers should update personal information if their name or address changed during the tax year.
  • Double-check return information – Ensure that all Social Security numbers and tax computations are correct, and that all names and Social Security numbers are in the same order as previous years. Math errors and incorrect tax-table information are leading causes of delayed refunds.
  • Include all supporting information such as W-2s; use paperclips, not staples, if filing a paper return.
  • Apply for extensions in a timely manner – Extension requests must be filed electronically no later than the May 15 income tax filing deadline.
  • If additional tax is due, include the remittance coupon to ensure proper payment posting.
  • Make checks or money orders payable to the Louisiana Department of Revenue; do not send cash.
  • If filing a paper return, attach the proper label to the mailing envelope.


Basic tips for ensuring a proper return filed by a reputable tax preparer:


  • Try to find a preparer who will be around to answer questions after the return has been filed.
  • Avoid preparers who base their fee on a percentage of the amount of the refund or who claim they can obtain larger refunds than other preparers without first reviewing your returns.
  • Review and ask questions before signing a return.
  • Ask others that you know who have used that preparer if they were satisfied with the services that they received.
  • Ask any preparer that you are considering for references.
  • Ask and verify if the preparer belongs to a professional organization that requires its members to pursue continuing education and also holds them accountable to a code of ethics.
  • Always question entries on your return that you don’t understand.
  • Never sign a blank return.
  • Insist that the preparer sign the return and provide his appropriate information on the return.
  • The preparer should meet with the taxpayer and go over the return before it is filed.
  • Taxpayers should be provided a copy of their return before it is filed.
  • Pay attention to media reports of persons who have been convicted of tax fraud.
  • Taxpayers should be aware that the information that they provide to their preparer could be used to commit identity theft by an unscrupulous preparer.


For more information, contact:

Byron Henderson – Director of Public Information, Louisiana Department of Revenue

Email: byron.henderson@la.gov

Office: (225) 219-2156

Sen. Boudreaux Supports Cervical Health Awareness

The United States Congress has named January as Cervical Health Awareness Month and Senator Boudreaux stands in support of all efforts to increase awareness and prevention of cervical health conditions. As with most health complications, early detection is key to regaining control over one’s health and leading a happy life. Provided below are resources available to ensuring HPV, Cervical Cancer, and other cervical diseases do not negatively affect your life.


 1. Cervical Health Symposium


The University Hospital & Clinics Cancer Committee will be hosting a free Cervical Health Symposium on Saturday, January 28th, 2017. A free lunch will be provided where guest speakers will discuss topics of importance in maintaining cervical health and prevention of critical diseases. You are invited and encouraged to attend!

Click here to register for this event.


2. Free Breast and Cervical Screenings


The partners of the Acadiana Breast and Cervical Coalition are offering free screenings to those who qualify. Calling Mrs. Louise Batiste, MHA of the University Hospitals & Clinics at 337-261-8553 would be the first step in finding out how you can receive this life-saving preventative care.


3. Inform Yourself!

Below are a few resources you may find useful in educating yourself and others on the issues of cervical health.


National Cervical Cancer Coalition’s Cervical Health Awareness Month Resources

The Louisiana Breast & Cervical Health Program’s Website

American Cancer Society’s Resources for Cervical Health Awareness Month


We hope these resources are useful in keeping the citizens of our community healthy and happy.

Sen. Boudreaux Supports Breast Cancer


The Acadiana Breast and Cervical Coalition Partners above are offering free breast and cervical screenings to all who qualify.

About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime, according to BreastCancer.org. Besides skin cancer, breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among American women, also according to BreastCancer.org. Senator Boudreaux encourages all women to get tested for both breast and cervical cancer to ensure their ultimate health.

Senator Boudreaux encourages all women to get tested for both breast and cervical cancer to ensure their ultimate health. Take advantage of this opportunity as soon as possible.


For more information or to schedule a screening, please call 337-261-8553


Sen. Boudreaux’s Health Update


From the Office of Senator Gerald Boudreaux

Last week, Senator Boudreaux had surgery to remove a growth that was found on his Thymus gland during a routine physical.  The growth was found to be benign.  He was released from the hospital and is at home with his family now recovering for the next 3-6 weeks.

Senator Boudreaux is recovering well and asks that you keep him in your thoughts and prayers.

Should you need any assistance while Senator Boudreaux is recovering, please contact his District Office at 337-267-7520 and speak with Phyllis Roy.

For more information on Senator Boudreaux’s procedure and recovery, follow the story by KATC by clicking here.

Sen. Boudreaux’s Reflections on the 2016 Legislative Sessions

This year, the Louisiana State Legislature spent a historic nineteen weeks in session. Our primary goal was to address the budget deficit. While progress was made, we still have work to do, beginning with the taxation structure of our system and the unregulated give-aways that are occurring.


However, I would like to highlight the great strides that were made to bettering our community and our state. Because of the leadership of Governor Edwards and the legislature, 350,000 Louisiana citizens will now have access to the newly expanded Medicaid insurance plan. Education is becoming a top priority for our government and I will continue to fight for our future in the Senate Education Committee. I encourage you to join me in giving a better future to our children by being involved in the process.  Attend a school board meeting, meet your children’s teachers, or visit the schools in your area.


Again, there is much work that needs to be done, but the discussions have started and progress is being made.  It is an honor to serve the citizens of this district and those of our state. I thank you for your support and will continue to work for a better and brighter future for Louisiana.


Sen. Boudreaux Comments on Community Violence

As your state senator, I cannot say I have all the answers.  But I strongly believe that we need to come to the table as a community to discuss the violence surging in our country.  If we work together and support each other, we will be able to keep our community safe.  Violence is not the answer and it never will be.  Watch this video for more of my thoughts on this subject.  I am ready to begin the fight against violence.




Local Updates on South Louisiana Flooding

Posted August 19th:

How to File a Flood Insurance Claim


Posted August 18th:

FEMA Assistance for Lafayette Parish, Requirements During Cleanup


Lafayette Parish residents who were affected by the recent floods may now be eligible for assistance from FEMA. Anyone who was impacted by flooding should register with FEMA, including individuals who are already covered by a flood insurance policy.


Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) was notified on Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 9 a.m. that Lafayette Parish was included in the federal disaster declaration. This federal declaration for the parish triggered the opening of the FEMA individual assistance program for affected residents.


All affected individuals, regardless if they are covered by flood insurance, should register damage by one of the following methods:

  • https://www.disasterassistance.gov
  • 1-800-621-3362
  • TTY: 1-800-462-7585


LCG is working with federal officials to establish a local FEMA Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) for individuals to register in person for federal assistance, with details forthcoming on the location and hours of operation. Flood victims need not visit the DRC if they are able to register with FEMA online or by phone. Individuals who registered before Lafayette Parish was included in the official declaration need not register again. Individuals who made damage claims with the local office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (HSEP) must register directly with FEMA to be eligible for any federal assistance. Making a claim with the Lafayette HSEP does not qualify individuals to receive FEMA assistance.


It may be safe for individuals to begin some demolition, including removing damaged sheetrock and insulation. However, before any repair work begins, such as replacement of sheetrock, the Codes Division must be contacted for permitting and inspection as necessary. (See contact information for the Codes Division below.)


As cleanup efforts continue, residents, businesses, and property owners are reminded to purchase the proper permits for flood damage repair and reconstruction. In most cases a minimal residential repair permit is all that is required and can be obtained at the Clifton Chenier Center at 220 W. Willow St., Bld. B. Substantially damaged homes will be subject to additional requirements and permitting.


Citizens who have experienced flood damage should follow the tips below to document the loss to property, as well as tips to rebuild:

  • If you have flood insurance, contact your insurance company for guidance on filing a claim.
  • Anyone impacted by flooding should register with FEMA at 800-621-FEMA (800-621-3362).
  • Be prepared to provide the name of property owner, address of damaged property, if the property is covered by flood insurance, the amount of water in the building and approximate cost to repair to pre-flood condition.
  • Take photos of all damage to property prior to repairs or cleanup.
  • Call the LCG Codes Division at 337-291-8461 for inspection prior to replacing any sheetrock or wall covering or with any questions.
  • Contact the LCG Codes Division at 337-291-8461 to obtain permits prior to repair or reconstruction.
  • Save all receipts for work done and all materials purchased.
  • Use only state licensed and registered contractors for any repairs.


For more information on FEMA visit www.disasterassistance.gov.
For more information on LCG’s Codes Division visit www.lafayettela.gov/pzd/codes.




Posted August 16th:

Additional Parishes Added to Federal Disaster Declaration

BATON ROUGE – Gov. John Bel Edwards’ request that President Barack Obama expand the existing federal declaration for the state of Louisiana to include additional parishes has been granted. These eight additional parishes were included in Gov. Edwards’ initial request for a federal disaster declaration but required additional data.

The eight newly approved parishes include:

  • Acadia
  • Ascension
  • East Feliciana
  • Iberia
  • Lafayette
  • Pointe Coupee
  • St. Landry
  • Vermilion

“I have traveled to the impacted parishes and met with families dealing with devastating loss due to this historic flood event,” said Gov. Edwards. “I am grateful that the federal government has added additional parishes to this disaster declaration. We are traveling the state with FEMA representatives who are constantly collecting data on the damage, and we will continuously update our request to add more parishes as needed. I am optimistic that more parishes will be approved as we work around the clock to ensure every resource is available to the people of Louisiana.”

Yesterday, on Aug. 15, Gov. Edwards submitted additional information for eight additional parishes to be added to the Major Disaster Declaration from the federal government. On Aug. 14, Gov. Edwards requested that President Barack Obama declare a major disaster for 21 Louisiana parishes. Four parish requests were granted in the initial declaration – East Baton Rouge, Livingston, St. Helena and Tangipahoa, the first parishes in the state struck by high water. Additional parishes will continuously be added to the declaration on a rolling basis.

The 21 initially requested parishes include:

  • Allen
  • Ascension
  • Avoylles
  • East Baton Rouge
  • East Feliciana
  • Iberia
  • Iverville
  • Jefferson Davis
  • Lafayette
  • Livingston
  • Pointe Capee
  • St. Helena
  • St. Landry
  • St. Martin
  • St. Tammany
  • Tangipahoa
  • Vermilion
  • Washington

Since Saturday, Aug. 13, Gov. Edwards has traveled the state with officials to assess the damage, including traveling with a FEMA representative who could provide immediate feedback to the federal government.

Additional parish requests will be made in the coming days.


Posted August 15th:

Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) Offers Guidance to Those Affected by Flood Waters

As Lafayette Parish moves into the recovery phase following the recent flooding, the assessment of damage is critical for individual property owners as well as the parish as a whole. Citizens who have experienced flood damage should follow the tips below to document the loss to property, as well as tips to rebuild:

  • Anyone impacted by flooding should register with FEMA at 800-621-FEMA (800-621-3362). This includes residents of parishes that have not yet been included as a federally declared disaster. Note, hold times may exceed 30 minutes when calling due to the high volume of calls.
  • Be prepared to provide the name of property owner, address of damaged property, if the property is covered by flood insurance, the amount of water in the building and approximate cost to repair to pre-flood condition.
  • If you currently have flood insurance, contact your insurance company for guidance on filing a claim.
  • Take photos of all damage to property prior to repairs or cleanup.
  • Save all receipts for work done and all materials purchased.
  • Use only state licensed and registered contractors for any repairs.
  • Purchase permits prior to repair or reconstruction. Contact the LCG Codes Division at 337-291-8461 for assistance.

Parish Damage Assessment and Federal Assistance
Lafayette Parish officials are currently making every effort to document the cumulative damage in the parish. This is necessary for the parish’s application for federal assistance. To assist in this effort, individuals who have sustained property damage should contact Lafayette Parish Office of Homeland Security at 337-291-5060. Operators will be available for assistance in damage assessment and any federal assistance that may be available.

As cleanup efforts begin, residents, businesses, and property owners are reminded to purchase the proper permits for flood damage repair and reconstruction. In most cases a minimal residential repair permit is all that is required and can be obtained at the Clifton Chenier Center at 220 W. Willow St., Bld. B. Substantially damaged homes will be subject to additional requirements and permitting.

Make sure to call the LCG Codes Division at 337-291-8461 for inspection prior to replacing any sheetrock or wall covering or with any questions.

For more information on FEMA visit www.disasterassistance.gov<http://www.disasterassistance.gov>.

For more information on LCG’s Codes Division visit www.lafayettela.gov/pzd/codes<http://www.lafayettela.gov/pzd/codes>.


Gov. Edwards, DOTD, Officials Highlight $60 Million Transportation Project

Screenshot 2016-08-05 09.00.00


LAFAYETTE – Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards joined Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) Secretary Shawn Wilson and local elected officials to highlight a major transportation project set to begin between the I-10/I-49 interchange and the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge. Last month, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) awarded a $60 million FASTLANE grant to the state of Louisiana to partially fund the project. The award was made based on an application by the Edwards administration.

“I am committed to improving our state’s infrastructure to support Louisiana’s growing economy, and that starts by bringing our federal tax dollars home,” said Gov. Edwards. “For too long, infrastructure needs in this state have been ignored, but by partnering with state, local and federal officials, we can make a real impact on the lives of our citizens. I’m proud of the application we’ve put together to receive this financial support, and I am looking forward to moving projects along all across this state.”

“Being one of 18 FASTLANE grants  recipients in the nation is a validation that Louisiana’s new multimodal transportation policy is delivering real projects,” said Dr. Wilson. “This is further evidence that DOTD can deliver transformative infrastructure projects that make a difference for communities and our economy with the necessary resources. However, we cannot just rely on one-time federal funds to maintain and build the system we deserve.”

“Louisiana can’t build a thriving twenty-first century economy on crumbling roads and highways,” said Rep. Charles Boustany. “The I-10 corridor supports Louisiana jobs and economic activity from large industries to small businesses. That’s why this funding is vitally important. I’m proud to work together with state and local officials to ensure I-10 continues to be a main artery of commerce across Louisiana and the Southern United States.”

“The intersection of I-49 and I-10 through Lafayette is a critical commercial corridor for the country and our state,” said Lafayette City-Parish President Joel Robideaux. “This investment is forward-thinking rather than reactionary. It anticipates and addresses future infrastructure needs. Lafayette is and always will be an enthusiastic partner with state and federal government on infrastructure projects. I thank Gov. Edwards for his leadership in securing these much needed funds. I urge all elected officials to rally behind his call for improving our roadways. The economic viability of our state depends on it.”

“We are very excited to be a part of this FASTLANE award grant. Infrastructure is a key component to economic development and the growth of a community,” said Guy Cormier, St. Martin Parish President. “St. Martin Parish, and all of Acadiana, will benefit tremendously from these improvements, and we look forward to working with the state to help move this project forward.”

This project will improve a portion of the interstate system that carried 120 million tons of freight worth $204 billion in 2015. The entire I-10 corridor is experiencing tremendous growth, but this is the most competitive section given the federal grant requirements. Traffic counts from 2016 indicate that more than 33 percent of all vehicles traveling on this portion of I-10 are freight related. Future freight flows are expected to grow by 55 percent, and the value of the freight will grow to an estimated $435.3 million. The entire project is estimated to cost more than $300 million.

“I am excited for the start of this great project that will go through House District 44 and have a great impact on the Acadiana region, said State Rep. Vincent Pierre. “I am greatly appreciative for the hardwork that Gov. Edwards and Secretary Wilson exhibited to secure these funds.”

“What a great expression of leadership by Gov. Edwards,” said State Sen. Gerald Boudreaux. “Because of his commitment to developing a relationship with President Obama and the federal government, we are the beneficiaries of a $60 million dollar project. This project comes at the right time to stimulate our economy.”

In April, the Edwards administration formally submitted an application for the federal transportation grant, following through with a commitment from Gov. Edwards to bring federal dollars back to Louisiana to reinvest in infrastructure.

By investing in this project, the state will now have the ability to dedicate available funds to advance other infrastructure projects. Gov. Edwards announced the award in July, outlining various projects that would progress in Louisiana.

In addition, in June 2016, Gov. Edwards announced the creation of the Task Force on Transportation Infrastructure Investment. The task force will make recommendations to Gov. Edwards to improve infrastructure in the state.

The duties of the task force include:

  • Research, identify, and make specific actionable recommendations for achieving sufficient increased levels of recurring funding to address the transportation backlog in highway and bridge maintenance needs in Louisiana.
  • Research, identify, and make specific actionable recommendations to be introduced in 2017 to fund a robust, multimodal construction program to address immediate needs that preserve the state’s investments in infrastructure and build “megaprojects” included in the Louisiana Statewide Transportation Plan, Priority A and Priority B.


LQHBA Provides Scholarships and Donations

Senator Boudreaux had the opportunity to be present at the presentation of two donation ceremonies at Delta Downs by the Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeders Association (LQHBA) earlier this month. On July 9th, the LQHBA provided $1,000 scholarships for two high school graduates from Sulphur, DeAnna Bonham and Jace Gilbert. Both students will be continuing their higher education this fall at McNeese State University. “While the primary goals of the LQHBA is to promote breeding and racing in the state, the association remains dedicated to offering higher education for Louisiana youth. Since its inception in 2001, the LQHBA scholarship program has earmarked over $430.000 for Louisiana students to attend a higher education institution.”


The LQHBA also donated $5,000 to the Special Olympics of Louisiana organization. The non-profit organization “changes lives by promoting understanding, acceptance and inclusion between people with and without intellectual disabilities. Special Olympics Louisiana provides sports training and athletic competitions and transform lives through the joy of sport. Currently, 14,639 children and adults with intellectual disabilities in Louisiana participate in over approximately 100 competitions.”


For more information on the presentation of these awards and the Louisiana Quarter Horse Breeders Association, visit their website by clicking here.