Speaker’s push to move key historic buildings to lieutenant governor dead after deal struck | Legislature


House Speaker Clay Schexnayder’s controversial endeavor to transfer management of the Capitol Sophisticated to the lieutenant governor’s business office is lifeless.

The Senate on Friday shelved Schexnayder’s program, which experienced confronted intense opposition from Jay Dardenne, whose state company, the Division of Administration, oversees the State Capitol, the Pentagon Apartments and other properties in the Capitol’s vicinity.

Critics experienced questioned Schexnayder’s motives mainly because he has been saying privately that he strategies to run for lieutenant governor, especially right after The Advocate | The Occasions-Picayune described that the speaker experienced fired the state’s contractors repairing his Pentagon Barracks residences and hired his stepsons to end the position. They billed the point out $48,000 for their operate.

But Schexnayder’s Home Monthly bill 756 did highlight a rising concern amid lawmakers that the Pentagon Barracks and the other historic properties need to be preset up much more promptly.

In a deal labored out amongst Dardenne, Schexnayder, R-Gonzales, Sen. Mike Reese, R-Leesville, and Sen. Glen Womack, R-Harrisonburg, Dardenne will supply a strategy to lawmakers that he previously launched for the upkeep perform. It features a record of $48 million in desires for the Capitol Complex.

In trade, Dardenne will have the possibility to have the Legislative Budgetary Handle Council Fund Stability restore $3.3 million in cash that the Household took from his company and gave to the lieutenant governor’s office environment. That reduce, made at the direction of Schexnayder, arrived after the Advocate documented on Schexnayder’s choosing of his stepsons. Gov. John Bel Edwards had previously redirected $5 million of cash in the lieutenant governor’s finances to restore college or university college fork out raises with his line-merchandise veto electricity.

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“We’ll formalize a presentation and suggestion on function to be carried out at the Capitol and the Pentagon,” Dardenne stated in an interview. “As usually, the Legislature will determine if they want to commit the cash or not on those people jobs.”

Reese, who experienced complained about his individual Pentagon apartment flooding, mentioned he and the many others identified the have to have to restore the Capitol Complex buildings, like the Pentagon Barracks, which are across the street from the Capitol. Senators and Dwelling customers allied with the speaker and Senate president lease the flats for down below sector level. The Capitol Complex also includes the Capitol annex, the Previous Arsenal Museum and their grounds.

“But we needed to generate some amount of transparency and accountability to make absolutely sure we are on a path to bringing the structures to a far better ailment,” Reese mentioned. “It’s a good substitute that satisfies everyone.”

Dardenne had explained transferring the structures to the lieutenant governor’s business would waste taxpayer funds. Which is since his company added benefits from economies of scale by contracting for a vast array of state properties. Dardenne also argued that the lieutenant governor — an office environment he once held — is unwell-geared up to deal with the maintenance requirements at the historic buildings in the Capitol complex.

Schexnayder experienced blasted Dardenne’s company for not shifting speedily sufficient to make repairs at the Pentagon and state Capitol, and argued to members that the lieutenant governor would get the get the job done carried out speedier. Schexnayder is expected to run for lieutenant governor up coming year if Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser runs for governor.


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