Working group established for planning director search

    Six months after East Baton Rouge Parish Planning Director Frank Duke resigned, a working group has been established to create a process to replace him. 

    The group was formed during last week’s Planning Commission meeting after months of pandemic-related delays.

    Following Duke’s January resignation letter, it wasn’t until the February meeting that a motion to establish a committee to determine the process for hiring a permanent director was made. Then the March commission meeting was canceled due to the emergence of the coronavirus in the state. 

    The commission unanimously voted in April and May to defer the matter because the meetings were being held via online webcast and the item to consider the search process for a new director can be done in executive session. The June meeting when the working group was established was also held online, and it’s not clear why the group was formed in June after being deferred during past online meetings. Rossie Washington Jr., the Planning Commission chairman, did not respond to requests for comment before this morning’s deadline. 

    Director of Development Carey Chauvin, who is part of the seven-member working group, hasn’t received any information pertaining to a possible timeline for the process yet, saying it’s still very early. 

    The working group comprises seven members: Planning Commission members Washington, Cliff Grout, Donna Collins-Lewis and Kelvin Hill; Erik Piazza from the Growth Coalition; Ed Lagucki with the Federation of Greater Baton Rouge Civic Associations; and Chauvin. 

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