Sulphur officials to hold special meetings to correct mistake and set charter election

Published: May. 22, 2023 at 8:42 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - The Sulphur Charter Commission and City Council have special meetings back-to-back Wednesday.

The purpose is to correct what some call a “typo” in the paperwork sent to the State Bond Commission to set an election on the revised charter. But at least one concerned citizen thinks the meeting should have been more publicized.

As a general rule, Sheila Broussard admits she is suspicious of Sulphur officials. So, she thought maybe they were up to no good when they set up two special meetings this week.

“I don’t understand why it wasn’t put onto the agenda that clearly. I don’t understand why they called for a meeting three days ahead of time,” she said.

But Mayor Mike Danahay said it’s to follow a timeline as they correct language sent to the Bond Commission to set the charter election.

“It was just an oversight on all our parts. It’s just clerical, a formality to do this. We’ll be able to resubmit to the bond commission to have a place on the October 14 ballot,” he said.

The mistake in the paperwork was to say the charter has to be approved by the majority of registered voters-- when it only has to be approved by the majority of those who vote.

Danahay said there’s a big difference.

“The call of the election said, ‘If it’s approved by the majority of registered voters in the City of Sulphur,’ when what it should have read was, ‘If it’s approved by the voters of the City of Sulphur,’ meaning that those who go out and vote on that day, the majority vote would be the determination of that election,” Danahay said.

For instance in the last mayoral race, more than thirteen thousand (13,026) registered voters could have cast a ballot, but less than four thousand did. A small word change, but a big distinction. Danahay said the public is welcome to the two special meetings this week.

Those back-to-back meetings start at 5 p.m. Wednesday at the temporary meeting room in the old Kroger parking lot in Sulphur. The election on the revised charter is expected to be held on October 14.