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Archive for the ‘ATC’ Category

No sooner had The Donald pulled off the biggest political upset since dewey-defeats-trumanthan the speculation on who would hold which cabinet position had begun. And it got downright scary.

There was former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani being touted as Attorney General.

Yep. That’s all we need: A doddering old has-been who has all he can handle to remember his own name standing in as the premier legal authority in the land. He’s probably the only one who could make John Mitchell look good.

And Newt-for-God’s-sake-Gingrich as Secretary of State?

And the Republicans thought Hillary was bad in that role?

Next thing you know, Trump will be tossing out Charles Koch’s name as Secretary of the Interior.

And how about Chris Christie as Secretary of Defense?

Or Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback as Secretary of the Treasury? I mean, look what he’s done for that state’s finances.

But according to The Wall Street Journal, in a story quickly picked up by state media, a familiar name (to Louisianans, that is) is being pitched as a potential choice for Secretary of Health and Human Services.

Bobby Jindal.

Are you kidding me?

Apparently not. http://www.wdsu.com/article/report-former-gov-bobby-jindal-being-considered-for-cabinet-role-in-trump-administration/8263712

For some reason the locals believe that because he worked for former Gov. Mike Foster as Secretary of Health and Hospitals and for former President George W. Bush as a special adviser to the Secretary of Health and Human Services, he somehow has a shot at a similar role in the Trump administration.

I would refer those reporters to chapters 30 through 37 of my book Bobby Jindal: His Destiny and Obsession. Those chapters include the sordid details of how Jindal single-handedly dismantled the state’s model public teaching hospital system to benefit a few greedy political hangers-on—even to the point of signing off on a contract containing 50 blank pages. A rhetorical question: would anyone reading this ever sign his or her name to any document containing even one blank page?

As an added bonus, I would refer you to Chapter 17 of the book which details how Jindal’s Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols landed a cushy lobbying position with Ochsner Health System after helping negotiate a deal whereby Ochsner would partner with Terrebonne General Medical Center to take over operation of the state’s Leonard Chabert Medical Center in Houma.

At least the WSJ thought to mention failed GOP presidential hopeful Dr. Ben Carson as also being under consideration for the Health and Human Services post.

That would, after all, make a little more sense. After all, Carson did pipe up from time to time on behalf of Trump’s candidacy. We heard nary a peep from the Louisiana wannabe wunderkind Piyush Jindal after he removed himself from the Republican presidential sweepstakes last November…and no one noticed (of course they didn’t notice while he was running, either). All he did was join the board of some Texas corporation and quickly fade from memory—helping the Republican Party but crushing my book sales in the process.

Hey, Donald, here’s a heads-up. After Tuesday’s race for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by David Vitter, there are two former U.S. Representatives who ran unsuccessfully for the upper chamber who are now unemployed.

And they both just happen to be doctors.

But how can you trump (pun intended) a Rhodes Scholar?

If James Comey wasn’t doing such a splendid job, you might even consider Louisiana State Police Superintendent Mike Edmonson to head up the FBI. Think how regal he’d look sitting behind old J. Edgar’s desk.

But while you’re at it, you may be needing a new Secretary of Immigration and Border Protection. We understand David Duke just pulled an astonishing 3 percent of the vote in that same U.S. Senate race and may be looking for something to do. And we already know the rapport he has with minorities. Why, he’d fit right in.

And while you’re at it, you may be on the lookout for someone to replace Jeh Johnson as Secretary of Homeland Security.

There’s this fellow who previously did such a stellar job running the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control—into the ground. Troy Hebert did even worse than Duke, racking up a whopping .5 percent of the vote in the 24-person Senate race. That’s one-half of one damn percentage point. Imagine what he could do for Homeland Security.

He may even still have his badge from his ATC days.

Yep, Donald, if you’re looking for washed up political has-beens to lead your administration—and it appears that you are—we have a boatload of ‘em down here in Louisiana.

Take your pick.

Please.

(Apologies to Henny Youngman.)

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In the year following Mike Edmonson’s initial appointment as State Police Superintendent, the Louisiana State Troopers’ Association (LSTA) was allowed to sell more than $9,000 in alcoholic beverages at the Joint Emergency Services Training Center (JESTC) in Zachary, LouisianaVoice has learned.

There is an entire Louisiana State Police (LSP) Web page dedicated to an extensive campaign against drinking and driving.

Moreover, sources say that as late as September 2015, alcohol was served during events at the facility which the JESTC Web page says is “maintained and operated by the Louisiana State Police,” though LSP sources have denied any alcohol was “sold” at the facility since 2010.

LSTA ran a bar at the LSP training facility through an entity called LSTA Enterprises, LLC, and while LSTA Enterprises did have a permit to sell alcohol during the last half of 2009 and all of 2010, its permit was “closed” on Jan. 31, 2011.

Name and Address

Name Mail Address Public Address
LSTA ENTERPRISES LLC 8120 JEFFERSON HWY BATON ROUGE, LA 70809 1400 W IRENE RD ZACHARY, LA 70791

Permit Information

Information provided is current.

Credential License Type Issue Date Expiration Date Status Reason Owner Information
AG.17.0000012833-BL CLASS A GENERAL BEER AND LIQUOR CLOSED CLOSED DUE TO REISSUE LSTA ENTERPRISES LLC
E.17.0000012833-BL CLASS E BEER AND LIQUOR 02/01/2010 01/31/2011 CLOSED OUT OF BUSINESS LSTA ENTERPRISES LLC
TMP.17.0000012833 TEMPORARY PERMIT 05/22/2009 06/25/2009 CLOSED LSTA ENTERPRISES LLC

LSP spokesman Doug Cain told LouisianaVoice on Thursday, “No alcohol has been sold at the facility since 2010,” though he stopped short of saying no alcohol had been served there since that date.

At events in 2013 and 2015, LouisianaVoice has learned, alcohol was served at a “free bar,” meaning alcoholic beverages were served at a bar at no charge. Regardless of whether alcohol is sold or provided on a complimentary basis, Louisiana state law requires that any entity or person who serves alcohol to obtain a liquor permit.

http://www.atc.rev.state.la.us/AlcoholFAQs.php

And regardless of whether alcohol is sold or provided free of charge, there are strict prohibitions against the presence of alcohol in corrections facilities. http://doc.louisiana.gov/frequently-asked-questions/

State prison trustys are housed at the same training complex as JETSC, which would appear to violate that prohibition.

The Louisiana Secretary of State’s corporate records page lists the corporate address for LSTA Enterprises, LLC as 8120 Jefferson Highway, which is the same address of the LSTA. Also, the Secretary of State also lists David Young as agent and manager of LSTA Enterprises. Young also is Executive Director of LSTA

Business: LSTA ENTERPRISES, L.L.C.
Charter Number: 37011447K
Registration Date: 4/2/2009

 

Domicile Address
8120 JEFFERSON HIGHWAY
BATON ROUGE, LA 708091626

 

Mailing Address
C/O DAVID YOUNG
8120 JEFFERSON HIGHWAY
BATON ROUGE, LA 708091626

 

Status
Status: Active
Annual Report Status: In Good Standing
File Date: 4/2/2009
Last Report Filed: 6/11/2016
Type: Limited Liability Company

 

Registered Agent(s)

 

Agent: DAVID YOUNG
Address 1: 8120 JEFFERSON HIGHWAY
City, State, Zip: BATON ROUGE, LA 70809-1626
Appointment Date: 4/2/2009

 

Officer(s) Additional Officers: No 

 

Officer: DAVID YOUNG
Title: Manager
Address 1: 8120 JEFFERSON HIGHWAY
City, State, Zip: BATON ROUGE, LA 70809-1626

 

Cain said that the bar originally was set up to serve trainees during a time that an outfit called Triple Canopies leased the JESTC facility. Triple Canopy, founded in May 2003 by veteran U.S. Army Special Forces soldiers, is a private security company that provides risk management, security, and mission support services for corporate, government and non-profit clients. “It wasn’t set up for folks to come in, have a drink, and then drive home,” Cain said. “It was for temporary residents undergoing training to have a drink before going to bed in the dormitory.”

The last event at which alcohol was sold at the facility, he said, “was in 2010.”

But sources told LouisianaVoice that at least two events were held after that date at which alcohol was served at a free bar. Both were memorials held in June of 2013 and September 2015, with the invitation to the latter specifically promoting “prayer, fellowship, food and beverages.”

LSTA describes itself on its Web page as a benevolent organization committed to improved pay and benefits, a better working environment, to providing support when needed, and to increasing the quality of life for members. “We also strive to improve the public services provided by our members to our community,” it says.

LouisianaVoice obtained a copy of LSTA’s 2009 federal tax return in which it itemized more than $875,000 in expenses, of which only $86,156 was for “miscellaneous member benefits” and “contributions and gifts.” Employee salaries and benefits accounted for $179,000 and another $142,000 was spent on “conferences, conventions and meetings,” lending credence to claims by some that LSTA is more of a source of parties than benevolent works.

Among the itemized LSTA salaries, were those of then-President Frank Besson ($16,000) and Treasurer Stephen Lafargue ($4,800). The report said Besson devoted eight hours per week to his LSTA duties and Lafargue two hours per week.

The tax return also showed that LSTA received $9,816 for “operation of a bar for members of the association.” http://990s.foundationcenter.org/990_pdf_archive/720/720841049/720841049_200912_990O.pdf

LouisianaVoice attempted to contact Young for a comment but we were told he was out of the office. We then emailed Cain, explaining that ATC records showed that LSTA held a liquor license under the name of LSTA Enterprises, LLC in 2009 and 2010.

Secretary of state records for LSTA Enterprises, LLC, we said in an email to Cain, listed David Young as the agent, officer and manager and records further show the entity to still be viable as a filing of June 2016. Corporate records show the address as 8120 Jefferson Highway, which is the address of LSTA.

LSTA Enterprises LLC, however, gave 1400 West Irene Road, Zachary, as the address for its liquor permit. That, of course, is the address of JESTC, we wrote.

We then asked: Does LSP take the position, given its public stance against drinking and driving, that allowing a private entity to sell alcoholic beverages on property “maintained and operated” by LSP is appropriate?

Rather than address the propriety of operating a bar on LSP property, however, Cain went to great lengths to deny that such an operation still exists and that its only purpose in 2010 was to serve on-site patrons who were being temporarily housed at the JESTC facility.

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Trying to write about Troy Hebert, former director of the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control (ATC), without getting mired down in controversy is a little like trying to run in knee-deep mud.

Likewise, attempts to make sense of it all is akin to trying to interpret a paint factory explosion as an expression of avant garde art.

avant-garde-art

It’s long past time to move on. Hebert is no longer conducting his misrule at ATC and he’s going about as far in his bid for U.S. Senator as Bobby Jindal did in his equally comical quest for the Republican presidential nomination. But flies have experienced less difficulty escaping from spider webs than we have in moving past the saga of Hebert et al.

It’s no longer a matter of LouisianaVoice writing about Troy Hebert; now it’s sub-factions sending messages back and forth, accusing each other of lying, threatening lawsuits, and still more anonymous sources coming forward with new information. https://louisianavoice.com/2016/09/20/fbi-agent-says-hebert-cleared-of-corruption-n-o-publication-way-off-in-identifying-our-story-source/

We no sooner pose our story about New Orleans attorney and former State Sen. Julie Quinn’s three-page letter to New Orleans CityBusiness demanding a retraction of its story about Quinn’s alleged representation of clients before ATC in applications for liquor licenses than we received copies of documents appearing to refute all of Quinn’s refutations.

This time, rather than offer denials of Facebook postings or legal representation, this unknown person, using the synonym “Sherlock Holmes” (not too terribly original), sent a screenshot of a Facebook post Quinn said she did not send. Also included were documents indicating that Quinn may have indeed represented clients in liquor license application matters.

Here is the complete text of that email:

From: Sherlock Holmes [mailto:] Sent: Wednesday, October 5, 2016 3:28 PM To: azspeak@cox.net Subject: Julie Quinn is LYING to you

Tom,

In your September 20, 2016 article you reported that LA attorney and former state senator, Julie Quinn told Louisiana Voice that she had never represented a client before ATC and quoted her as stating “I don’t do liquor licenses and I have NEVER in my career represented a single client in a liquor permit matter” (emphasis added).

Interestingly, in the letter to City Business from Quinn’s law partner, Mr. Alsterberg, (that you have attached to your October 4, 2016 article) he states: “…in fact, throughout her entire career, Ms. Quinn has only assisted a single client in this type of matter [alcohol licensing], which occurred four years ago on behalf of a restaurant located in the warehouse district, not a bar located in the French Quarter.”

Based on these two contradictory statements, it is clear that Ms. Quinn LIED  to you. 

Also, the attached emails, articles and Facebook post provide irrefutable evidence that Ms. Quinn, and now her law partner, continue to lie about her business dealings involving the ATC and also about her Facebook activity. I WONDER WHAT SHE IS TRYING TO HIDE????

Julie Quinn has represented (or held herself out to state governmental officials and the media as representing) at least 6 clients in ATC related matters between Jan 2013 and March 2016 including: a business in Grand Isle that was operating under a previous owner’s permit; a French Quarter business that had its permit revoked and had a bad reputation in the area for being a location frequented by prostitutes, panderers, johns, and were multiple arrest for drugs and weapons were made; and 3 French Quarter strip clubs.   

The attached documents also show that Quinn did in fact do more than “post links to two articles” on her Facebook page and that she did in fact make a Facebook post insinuating that “she just killed a politician.”  As you will see, the Facebook post provided were made in near proximity to your article about the FBI investigating Troy Hebert.

In addition to his email message, “Sherlock” also included DOCUMENTS that included copies of the Facebook screen shot, emails that alluded to representation of clients applying for liquor licenses, and news stories citing Quinn as the source of a Facebook post of a cartoon about confessing to killing “a politician.”

With stories in the queue about a significant court ruling on public records, flood recovery efforts and potential a judicial conflict of interests on the part of a Baton Rouge judge, this should be the final word in the sordid saga of Troy Hebert.

But it probably won’t be.

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First, Troy Hebert sued. Then he un-sued. Then he sued again.

Meanwhile, Julie Quinn is threatening to sue.

And the saga of the Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control (ATC)—and by extension, the race for U.S. Senator, rolls on ad nauseam.

It’s the kind of macabre comedy only a Louisiana politics junkie could love.

Hebert, former ATC Director, is running for the Senate seat being vacated by retiring Sen. David Vitter. He is currently polling at somewhere around 0 percent, give or take a percentage point or two. (Well, in his case, you’d have to give.)

Quinn, now a New Orleans attorney, is a former State Senator. Right now she’s justifiably steamed.

Hebert first filed a lawsuit against Southern Media and Opinion Research poll and pollster Bernie Pinsonat because he was incorrectly listed as a Republican by the polling service. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/aug/9/senate-candidate-troy-hebert-files-suit-against-po/

He was polling 2 percent at the time and his lawsuit said the poll was flawed and that “the system is definitely rigged against independent candidates.”

Considering how his numbers have since plummeted by two points, he may be right.

He subsequently dropped that suit in favor of filing yet more litigation to block a debate between candidates for Senate after he was excluded because of his (wait for it)….low poll numbers. http://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/politics/elections/article_b80928b4-899a-11e6-ac34-5befc9373f3f.html

Meanwhile, he sent LouisianaVoice an email recently in which he attached a link to a story saying that the FBI had ended its investigation of official wrongdoing. In his email, he asked that LouisianaVoice publish a story to that effect…and we did.

The story alluded to a story in CityBusiness magazine of New Orleans which indicated that LouisianaVoice relied on anonymous sources in its story about the FBI launching its investigation of Hebert. At the same time, CityBusiness, apparently citing its own anonymous sources, said that Quinn was apparently the source for the LouisianaVoice story.

Not only was CityBusiness dead wrong about our source, but it went even further in saying that Quinn, while dating former Jefferson Parish President and unsuccessful candidate for Lieutenant Governor John Young, was in competition with John Young’s brother Chris Young in representing clients in liquor license matters before ATC.

Chris Young, previously a lobbyist for the Louisiana Beer League, also represented clients in licensure matters before ATC. Both Youngs are attorneys and their sister was head of the New Orleans ATC office.

Chris Young was recently indicted for distributing child porn on his cell phone. The porn consisted of a video of a boy having sex with a donkey and Chris Young used the poor judgment of sending the videos to others, which was apparently the basis of the indictment.

But it didn’t end there. The FBI, it seems, rather than employing old-fashioned police work in its investigation of Hebert, tried instead to get to Chris Young to roll over on Hebert. When he refused, the FBI probe abruptly ended.

Now Quinn has her dander up and her attorney has fired off a scorching letter to CityBusiness Publisher Lisa Blossman calling its story “flat-out false” and “highly defamatory” and demanding an immediate retraction or face possible litigation.

Rather than go through the three pages picking out highlights, we decided to publish the letter-from-julie-quinn here.

After wading through all the interlocking relationships of brothers and sister, former fiancés, employees, a state agency head, legal representation, federal investigations, kiddie porn, media stories and political hacks , just one conclusion may be reached: Only in Louisiana could all this come together in a single story and still have the ring of truth.

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He’s a walkin’ contradiction, partly truth, partly fiction
Takin’ ev’ry wrong direction on his lonely way back home

(The Pilgrim—Kris Kristofferson)

It was the noon hour in Walk On’s on Poydras Street in New Orleans and a noisy lunch crowd was packed in as one of the flat screen televisions was demanding my attention with a re-play of the Boston Red Sox players celebrating their American League East Championship after two straight years of finishing dead last in the division.

I watched because the Red Sox have been my favorite team since Ted Williams won an American League batting championship with a .388 average in 1957 at age 38. I was 14 at the time. He retired in 1960, hitting a home run in his last at-bat. (My second favorite team is the Chicago Cubs: Dare I hope for a dream World Series between the two? Hey, it could happen.)

He walked into the Restaurant a few minutes late (after I had called to say I would be two hours late). Seeing him looking around for someone he’d never met, I signaled to him to let him know I was his lunch appointment. “Sorry I’m late. I made some money today,” he said as he slid into the booth.

Danil Ezekiel Faust is a candidate for Congress from Louisiana’s 1st Congressional District and he doesn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell because he has no money and he’s running against an incumbent (Steve Scalise) who has millions.

And that is precisely why he’s running.

The money he made was as an online trader

A Puerto Rican Irish Jew, Faust, a Democrat, is what Kris Kristofferson calls a walking contradiction: He is a former manager of an Arizona hedge fund who continues to play the market but who at the same time despises Wall Street and everything it stands for.

His hero also happens to be is favorite American President: Andrew Jackson. “They can take down those statues of Confederate soldiers, but not Andrew Jackson. The man took a bullet in the chest defending his wife’s honor. He was opposed to a National Bank…and he was right. He is a real American hero,” overlooking the fact that Jackson also signed into law the Indian Removal Act that stained America’s history with the Trail of Tears.

And like so many others, he insists there is entirely too much money in politics.

He also is a strong proponent of wind energy, a sure way to gin up substantial opposition (read: campaign contributions for his opponent) from the fossil fuel industry. He is pro-choice and an unabashed supporter of gay rights and equal pay for women.

And he keeps right on a-changin’ for the better or the worse
Searchin’ for a shrine he’s never found
Never knowin’ if believin’ is a blessin’ or a curse
Or if the goin’ up was worth the comin’ down

 “If I had the money to play on a level playing field, there’s no doubt I could win,” he said between bites of his heart-attack inducing bacon cheeseburger.

But he has no official organization. His campaign headquarters are in his former residence upstairs over the Three-Legged Dog at 400 Burgundy in the French Quarter. His business cards are from a computer program.

Most of all, though, he has no financial backing. Scalise, on the other hand, earlier tied by blogger Lamar White to a Ku Klux Klan event at which David Duke was the main speaker, has the Koch brothers and their Americans for Prosperity (AFP) pouring money into his re-election campaign through various Super PACs which, unfortunately drowns out the message of any underfunded opponent.

“AFP, I believe, held a big social event on the same night at Acme Oyster House right next door to Scalise’s headquarters,” he said.

No one can be heard over the roar of cash being poured into the campaign of an entrenched—and bought—incumbent. And there is no greater concentration of bought politicians than in the U.S. Congress.

Never mind that Scalise voted against federal funding to assist Super Storm Sandy victims in New Jersey but now is demanding federal funds for Louisiana’s flood victims. http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-hiltzik-louisiana-floods-20160822-snap-story.html

Faust, a native of Puerto Rico (take note, birthers: he can never be President), stopped temporarily in New Orleans en route to his intended destination—New York, where he planned to take a job with another hedge fund. But while in New Orleans, he fell in love. With New Orleans and its diverse culture “and its laid-back way of life.”

He took a job as a doorman at a French Quarter strip club. It was while working at that job that he began watching and listening. He learned some unforgettable lessons about the realities of life and the local power structure. In short, he knows where a lot of political skeletons are buried. “It was nothing for politicians and powerful businessmen to come into the club and drop $10,000,” he said.

He said the much-ballyhooed Operation Trick or Treat conducted a year ago by the Louisiana State Police (LSP) and the Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control (ATC) was a sham. The clubs that played ball and made the right political contributions were never investigated, he said.

He also said the LSP and ATC sweep in Operation Trick or Treat and a campaign to limit the number of strip clubs in the French Quarter was the idea of established strip clubs friendly with ATC’s then-director Troy Hebert “to keep down competition.”

So what made Danil Faust run?

“I kept hearing that David Duke was going to run,” he said. “But in the end, he got in the U.S. Senate race instead. I even heard Troy Hebert was running.”

Hebert, who also opted to join the crowded (24 candidates) Senate race, does not reside in the First Congressional District but in Louisiana, residency is not a requirement. (The First Congressional District, by the way, was used by Bobby Jindal as a springboard to the governor’s office.)

“Other than Scalise, no one is running for the office,” he said. Actually, there are seven candidates on the ballot, but like Faust, none of the other five challengers is given a chance in this election.

But that’s what happens when big money like the Kochs, George Soros, Donald Sussman, Michael Bloomberg, Warren Stephens, Hank Greenburg, and the Devos family, to name but a few, overpowers and corrupts the electoral process. https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/politics/superpac-donors-2016/

And no matter if his passion is Andrew Jackson, or if he works as a hedge fund manager, an advocate of wind power, a strip club doorman or a political candidate, Danil Ezekiel Faust remains his own man.

But if this world keeps right on turnin’ for the better or the worse
And all he ever gets is older and around
From the rockin’ of the cradle to the rollin’ of the hearse
The goin’ up was worth the comin’ down

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