Roy Burns is taking to the airwaves in his quest to become the north shore’s next district attorney.
The mostly self-funded candidate in the race for DA of the 22nd Judicial District, which includes St. Tammany and Washington parishes, has filmed six TV spots to run on local broadcast and cable channels, according to his campaign.
Burns’ spots feature his family, including his wife, a U.S. Army Reserve colonel.
Burns was one of the first candidates to jump into the race to replace embattled longtime DA Walter Reed, who is not running for re-election. The TV ads will supplement radio ads that have been running since July.
Burns appears to be following the playbook of Charles Preston, who, as a self-funded outsider, defeated a better-connected Leanne Truehart in the race for St. Tammany Parish coroner after the office’s longtime occupant was brought down by scandal. Preston took to the air in a series of slick ads that featured his family, including Preston talking candidly about his brother’s suicide.
Like Truehart, DA candidate Brian Trainor has raised six figures from diverse sources, and as a former assistant district attorney under Reed and current chief deputy (on leave) under St. Tammany Parish Sheriff Jack Strain, he has some of the parish’s political heavyweights behind him. Unlike Truehart, though, Trainor has gotten into the TV game early, launching his first advertisements this week.
There is another common thread linking Burns and Preston: political consultant James Hartman, who worked on Preston’s campaign and is working on Burns’ as well.
Burns faces three opponents in the November race: Trainor, Alan Black and Warren Montgomery.
Gadfly drops out of U.S. Senate contest
It may not have much of an impact on the race, but one of four long-shot Democratic challengers to U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., dropped out of the senatorial contest this week.
The Rev. Raymond Brown, a well-known gadfly in New Orleans, said in a prepared statement that he dropped out “after careful deliberation with my wife and my family.” He said he hoped his platform of increasing economic opportunities for the poor becomes “a critical part of the discussions as the race moves forward.”
Brown was one of two African-Americans in the nine-member field, now down to eight. The major candidates are U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-Baton Rouge; tea party candidate Rob Maness, also a Republican; and Landrieu.
Mandeville council tells its members to cool it
Can you blame the Mandeville City Council for wanting a little civility?
During one meeting last year, Councilman Ernest Burguieres challenged Mayor Donald Villere to have him arrestedand thrown out of the chamber. Villere shot back that Burguieres was a master of character assassination.
This summer, Villere and Council Chairman Rick Danielson got heated enough during a budget workshop that Danielson gaveled the meeting into recessuntil Villere finished speaking.
So it may be no surprise that council members voted unanimously Thursday for a resolution containing nine guidelines for how to behave at meetings. They include paying attention, showing respect, being agreeable and giving constructive criticism.
Danielson, who put the matter on the agenda, said a reminder to use good manners was a positive thing.
“Everybody in this room bears some of the blame some of the time,” he said.
The resolution also won the backing of the St. Tammany West Chamber of Commerce, whose CEO, Lacey Toledano, spoke in its favor. Toledano stressed that the resolution was aimed not just at elected officials but also at the residents who come to meetings and speak on issues.
Ex-con Shepherd says he wants to be paid
Derrick Shepherd, the former Marrero state senator sent to prison for money laundering in 2008, has asked the Kenner Housing Authority to pay him $37,705 for legal work he did the year before his conviction.
Shepherd’s work for the authority is unrelated to the money laundering scheme that got him two years in federal prison, but most of it is related to an effort to oust the authority’s current chairman.
Donald Small, who was accused of being illegally installed on the board before his appointment was upheld by two courts, told nola.com this week that he only remembers Shepherd “coming to one or two meetings and telling me that I wasn’t a member on the board.”
Richard Murray, the Housing Authority’s executive director, said Friday that no decision has been made on what to do about Shepherd’s invoices and that he could not comment further.
Shepherd’s stint in prison came from helping Gwendolyn Joseph Moyo launder $141,000 in checks written to her companies, whose accounts had been frozen by the state Insurance Department.
Shepherd deposited bogus construction bond premiums in his bank accounts for Moyo after her accounts were seized, prosecutors said.
Compiled by staff writers Faimon A. Roberts III, Gordon Russell and Chad Calder