The Springfield town attorney has talked the Board of Aldermen out of hiring former mayor Charles Martin following his court-ordered resignation connected to a ticket-fixing scheme.

In a meeting earlier this month, Martin tendered his resignation, and aldermen immediately began to discuss creating a new government position and installing the outgoing mayor. However, town attorney Brian Abels advised the aldermen to hold off so he could review state ethics rules.

Acting mayor Tommy Abels, cousin of the attorney, said Springfield has since decided not to hire Martin.

“Legally, we can’t do it,” he said.

Aldermen had discussed creating a temporary position that would oversee the construction of Springfield’s new water system and implementation of a billing system. They looked to Martin because of his familiarity with the project.

Tommy Abels said the town isn’t looking to hire anyone else for the job because Martin is still helping, just as a volunteer.

“He still kind of looks over a few things,” the acting mayor said. “(Martin is) not getting any pay, or anything like that. ... He’s always been like that.”

Pointe Coupee takes first step toward ending police jury system

It took some doing, but the Pointe Coupe Police Jury finally seated its Home Rule Charter Commission this week — the group of community stakeholders who will attempt to reshape the parish’s governmental structure from a police jury system to parish council/parish president form of government.

Each member of the Police Jury got to select one person from the batch of 27 registered voters who submitted their names and credentials to the parish in hopes of being seated on the commission. Because state law restricts charter commissions to a maximum of 11 members, Jury President Melanie Bueche forfeited her appointment to instead choose an alternate commission member who will step in if one of the 11 seated members can no longer serve for whatever reason.

Appointed to the charter commission were Jacques LaCour for District 1, Price Gay for District 2, Gail Hurst for District 3, Alden Andre for District 4, Jimmy Lyles for District 5, Cletus Langlois for District 9, Richard Maciasz for District 10, Jeremy LaCombe for District 11 and Albert Sneed, Jr. for District 12.

Jurors Albert Dukes and Cornell Dukes will represent their respective districts on the charter commission. James Fairchild will serve as the commission’s alternate member.

The charter commission will hold its first meeting at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 29.

The charter group will have up to 18 months to draft a charter the Police Jury is required to present to voters through a parishwide election.

Advocate staff writers Steve Hardy and Terry L. Jones contributed to this report.