Five qualify for race

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 6, 2010



LAPLACE – The five candidates who have previously expressed their interest in seeking St. John Parish’s top job have all officially qualified for the March 27 special election.

The winner of the election will take office in May and serve out the remaining two years on former Parish President Bill Hubbard’s first term in office. Hubbard resigned in September before pleading guilty in federal court to taking bribes from three parish contractors. Sentencing in his case is set for April 13 in New Orleans.

Qualifying Wednesday were Edgard businessman Perry Bailey, St. John School Board President Gerald Keller and former St. John Chief Administrative Officer Natalie Robottom.

Acting St. John Parish CAO Gary “Buddy” Boe, who served as Hubbard’s public information officer, signed up for the race Thursday. St. John Councilman-at-Large Richard “Dale” Wolfe officially qualified Friday to round out the race.

According to the Secretary of State’s Web site, Bailey, Keller, Robottom and Wolfe are all listed as democrats. Boe is the lone republican in the race.

Also appearing on the March 27 ballot is a renewal of a 1-mill property tax dedicated to housing juvenile detainees. If approved, the tax would be levied for 20 years and would help pay for a remodeling of the building that houses juvenile probation officers, counselors and judges. The tax generated about $294,000 last year.