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Advocate filel photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Mike Yenni stands on airport buyout land in Kenner near Louis Armstrong International Airport in 2012

JOHN MCCUSKER

City Council members in both Kenner and Harahan are expected to pass resolutions next week calling for the resignation of Jefferson Parish President Mike Yenni over his sexually explicit text messages to a 17-year-old. 

The two cities would join the Gretna and Westwego councils and the Parish Council in making the formal request, which is being put forward by Councilman Greg Carroll in Kenner and Councilman Craig Johnston in Harahan.

In Kenner, where Yenni spent six years as mayor before taking the reins as parish president early this year, council members Maria DeFrancesch and Keith Reynaud are expected to attach their names to the resolution.

Yenni’s acknowledgement that he sent improper texts to a 17-year-old boy while running for parish president last year has impaired his ability to govern the parish, the Kenner resolution says. 

Kenner Councilman Dominick Impastato said he expects there may be some adjustment to the language of the resolution, but he expects it to pass unanimously.

“My biggest concern in all of this, and where I think Jefferson Parish could get really hurt, is if all the incredible administrators that (Yenni) brought over there are not kept in those positions,” he said. “I hope that whatever happens from here on out that … people realize the parish, with those folks in place, is really in a good position to continue to succeed.”

Yenni brought several top appointees with him from Kenner to parish government. 

The chorus of calls for Yenni’s resignation began the week after WWL-TV’s initial Sept. 29 report on the text messages, though Yenni has said on three occasions that he will not step down.

Yenni maintains the issue is a personal one that does not affect his ability to do his job.

A recall petition against Yenni was filed with the state on Wednesday, and a poll of Jefferson Parish residents released Thursday found that nearly 80 percent of the respondents said he should step down.

The WWL report, citing sources, said Yenni is being investigated by the FBI for the texts he sent to the teenager, whom he met at a high school graduation function.

The boy, who is now in college, said Yenni also met him at the mall where he worked, gave him a pair of underwear and kissed him in the bathroom. He said Yenni also suggested the boy could go to work at his office so the two could be close without drawing scrutiny.

Carroll, who was the first of three Kenner council members to call several days ago for Yenni to resign, said that city's council has an obligation to seek Yenni's resignation because his actions occurred while he was mayor of Kenner and because the city is part of Jefferson Parish.

Follow Chad Calder on Twitter, @Chad_Calder.