- Associated Press - Friday, December 25, 2015

ALEXANDRIA, La. (AP) - Mayor Jacques Roy says the City of Alexandria’s future is bright as it approaches the new year.

In a recent briefing, Roy cited good financial figures, projects that will boost economic development and a sense of community pride that he says was evident during the recent, inaugural Alex Winter Fete.

“The state of our city is great. Operationally, we are sound. Fiscally, we are sound,” Roy said.

Roy tells The Town Talk (https://townta.lk/22qUSoX ), “It is a good place where we find ourselves today . and I hope that we will take an opportunity to seize this moment and really move forward while things are going great.”

Among the projects under way or in the works are the relocation of Central Louisiana Technical Community College to downtown Alexandria; new recreation programs, which includes after-school programs and the summer Rec2U tour which brought recreational opportunities to various sites around the city; R.I.V.E.R. Act ventures; installation of new generators at the city power plant; the coming reopening of the Hotel Bentley and the opening of the Holiday Inn Downtown Convention Center, formerly the Alexander Fulton Hotel.

Roy also noted the recently released fiscal 2014-15 audit of city finances showed the city is doing well financially and is meeting its fiduciary and operational responsibilities.

James Ballard of the accounting firm of Payne, Moore & Herrington LLP, offered high praise in the audit. “I’ve been doing this audit for 35 years, and this is the first time in that time period that there have been no findings (problem areas) in the report,” Ballard said, and that is “astounding.”

Roy said having that type of audit report is a source of pride for the city. He had challenged Finance Director David Crutchfield and the Finance Department to work toward a zero-finding audit, and he applauded their accomplishment.

The mayor said in last year’s “state of the city” address that a perpetual aim is having a city worthy of citizens’ love.

Pointing to the camaraderie evident at the Alex Winter Fete, Roy said, “I was reminded of what this community can do when it comes together and how wonderful and beautiful this community is.”

The festival took place Dec. 3-5, and by all measures was successful. The city had projected a total crowd of 15,000, but the festival ended up drawing more than 27,000 visitors.

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Information from: Alexandria Daily Town Talk, https://www.thetowntalk.com


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