Gretna businessman Vincent De Salvo said he entered the race for Jefferson Parish president on Wednesday to offer himself as an alternative to the familiar faces that dominate parish politics.
De Salvo, 63, said many people he talks to at council meetings say they’re tired of voting for the same people and upset at how elected officials circumvent term limits by running for office in other districts.
“This jumping seats — it’s just ridiculous,” he said. “We put in term limits for a reason. You need to stay in your seat and go home after.”
Speaking of the two top-tier candidates in the parish president’s race, Desalvo noted Elton Lagasse is 75 and still in politics, while 39-year-old Kenner Mayor Mike Yenni is part of a political dynasty.
“I get tired of looking at all the same (campaign) signs,” he said.
De Salvo’s family owned Vince’s Seafood for six decades before it closed last year, a casualty of the BP oil spill. He ran for Gretna City Council twice in the 1980s.
If elected, De Salvo said he would support coastal restoration efforts and the commercial and recreational fishing industries. He said he would push to find an industrial user for the Avondale shipyard.
He said the parish could do more to support the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, particularly in the area of community relations to “help take this target off our policemen.”
He said the parish’s playgrounds and recreational facilities need to be better maintained.
De Salvo attended Holy Cross High School and graduated with a degree in business administration and finance from Loyola University. He has worked as a contractor and as a real estate and insurance broker.