The Town of New Llano has issued the following press release in response to the news that the Vernon Parish Chember of Commerce had changed the venue for an upcoming meeting:
***** FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE*****
On the afternoon of Friday the 7th of February 2020, Chamber of Commerce President Morris accompanied by Chamber Members Dr. Christina Lord and Mr. Mike Bealer met with Mayor Todd regarding the Leesville/New Llano merger concept. In that meeting Mayor Todd invited the Chamber to speak at the upcoming council meeting to officially present the concept to the entire City Council and the citizens of New Llano in official open meeting. Mayor Todd had them added to the agenda to afford and legally guarantee the Chamber of Commerce uninterrupted time to present and speak directly to the council and the citizens of New Llano.
However, the Chamber representative decided to hold the meeting elsewhere. This change in venue and the avenue that was used to announce the change came as a shock to New Llano elected officials and citizens alike. The Town of New Llano is disappointed to have to report that once again no dialog took place between the Vernon Parish Chamber of Commerce and the Town of New Llano. The city officials were never notified of the venue change. Officials found out the same as everyone else, on social media.
This is troubling to the Town of New Llano as we have made every attempt possible to try and bridge the communication barrier that seems to exist at the present time. On Tuesday, February 18th 2020, at approximately 1:30 P.M., Mayor Todd sent updated contact and alternate representative information to the Vernon Parish Chamber of Commerce in proper format. So, for the Chamber to change the venue from official open council session to another unofficial venue with no dialog is troubling. Had the Chamber used open lines of communication we would have been able to inform President Morris of the impossibility of a venue change for this particular meeting.
Even more troubling is the fact that neither the Chamber representatives, nor anyone else, has revealed any benefit whatsoever that New Llano would gain from letting Leesville take over our Town that we have worked so hard to develop. If that did occur, Leesville would own what is now New Llano, and our Town would not exist.
New Llano Town Council Meetings are held on the 4th Tuesday of every month and begin at 6:30 P.M. with the real heart of the meeting, open discussion. Immediately followed by the Official open meeting proceedings beginning at 7 P.M. ALL NEW LLANO RESIDENCE AND BUSINESS OWNERS are invited and encouraged to attend. As the City Council Meetings are not just a place, but rather THE PLACE for residence and business owners to be heard.
Mayor Todd will NOT be making any changes to the agenda and discussions about resident’s feelings and thoughts on the matter concerning any merger or consolidation of cities will proceed as scheduled at the Town of New Llano Council Meeting starting at 6:30 p.m. on February 25th, 2020.