The Morehouse Parish Police Jury hired a new assistant secretary-treasurer at its March meeting, held Monday night

Bastrop resident Amy Lebrun was hired in the position on a 90-day probationary period and will be reviewed at that time for full-time employment. Jury member Jack Cockrell made the motion to hire Lebrun, who has an extensive background of working with office software and accounting programs, has lived in Morehouse Parish for the past 12 years and is married to Ronald Lebrun.

The jury also approved Gene Montgomery to hire a trackhoe operator at $10.50 an hour for the public works department.

Quotes were received for a new roof for repairs to the police jury/McMeans annex roof; Randall McLarrin, LLC received the job with a quote of $6,972. This includes a 25-year warranty on the shingles and a 10-year warranty on the roof.

The agenda was amended to discuss repair work needed on the Morehouse Parish jail. Margaret Stokes told the jury that the showers in the jail needed painting and the jury approved the work, up to $600. David Thomas, justice of the peace for Ward 6, asked to address the jury regarding mandatory training the jp's had to attend every two years. He stated that the training costs the justices several hundred dollars to attend and he would like to ask the jury to help pay for it.

"We ask you all to do your job and have court, but nothing has been done," Juror Cockrell responded. "Ya'll just quit having court."

"We went to great lengths to have someone teach ya'll how to have court," Juror Mark Sistrunk continued. "We even said that the justices could have a large percentage of the monies collected in the litter court but there has not been one in a long time."

Thomas responded that their job was more than just writing litter tickets, but the Bastrop City Marshall's office had been going out of it's jurisdiction to serve papers.

"We are supposed to be able to do small claims court, but the City Marshall has been serving all of those claims and they are seen in Bastrop City Court," Thomas said. "I talked to Lisa Chafford about this and she told me it was within their jurisdiction, as they were commissioned."

The jury declined to pay for any training.

In jury correspondences, Sistrunk wanted to go on record regarding a letter he had received from James Murphy, who is running for Bastrop Mayor.

"Mr. Murphy sent out a letter and part of it stated...

You like the MAC? Did you know it recently lost $485,000 in one year? There must have been some type of study done before they built it, yet in an economic downturn, they built it anyway! No one should build a facility that loses money and forces us to borrow and borrow...

I would like to address this paragraph on record. First of all, the MAC has lost no money, period. Secondly, no parish money was used to build the MAC; we received a grant from the State of Louisiana, economic development to build it. Fourth, the City of Bastrop has nothing to do with the MAC," Sistrunk said.

"The MAC has been an absolute Godsend for Morehouse Parish; it has been booked for at least 35 years and three weeks ago, the High School Rodeo was held there and every motorhome spot was booked and the parking lot was full of motorhomes and trailers," he continued. "Also, every time I came through town, there were trucks with horse trailers at restaurants and motels, so the MAC has brought money into our parish. I would like for Mr. Murphy to get his facts straight before stating something like this."