Covington Weekly » Blog Archives

Tag Archives: Northshore Community Foundation

General Local Events Local News

SLLS Free Legal Clinic For Veterans

Published by:

Southeast Louisiana Legal Services’ (SLLS) Northshore Pro Bono Project is hosting a free legal clinic for veterans. SLLS is a nonprofit legal organization which works to increase access to justice for low-income families in Southeast Louisiana who need assistance with civil legal matters.
The Free Legal Clinic for Veterans takes place on Friday, July 13, 2018 from 9 a.m. To 12 noon at the Northshore Community Foundation. The NCF is located at 807 N. Columbia St. If you need assistance, please bring your documents you want an attorney to review. If you have any questions, contact Cynthia M. Bordonaro, SLLS’ Northshore Pro Bono Project at (985)893-0076 ext. 519.

This event is funded by The Louisiana Bar Foundation’s Jock Scott Northshore Community Partnership Panel.


The mission of Southeast Louisiana Legal Services is to achieve justice for low-income people in Louisiana by enforcing and defending their legal rights through civil legal aid, advocacy and community education. SLLS has six offices, serves 22 parishes, and has about 70 employees. Visit www.slls.org.

Featured Posts Local News Shop Local

CBA Statement on proposed Bikeshare Program

Published by:

Some have followed the bizarre story (here, here, and here and also here plus here as well) of the Northshore Community Foundation’s proposed BikeShare Program in the Covington Weekly. The CBA issued a statement with regard to the matter and it is printed here in its entirety, along with the results of the poll referenced:

September 28, 2017
“The Covington Business Association must adhere to the mission by which our organization was founded – to represent and advance the interests of local business. To that end, we conducted an anonymous poll of our member businesses at a recent meeting to gage their opinions on the bike share issue. An overwhelming majority of our members who responded were not in favor of the bike share program, and particularly not one that is funded by the taxpayer. Furthermore, after conducting additional research on bike share programs around the country, our board of directors does not believe that this program, as currently proposed, will be successful nor enhance our quality of life on a local level. Therefore, the Covington Business Association does not support this project, nor its funding by the St Tammany Parish government or our local municipality.
The CBA is willing to work with the Tammany Trace, local organizations and private businesses to devise and implement a strategy for expanding bicycle availability along and near the Trace. We believe that a more appropriate alternative can be identified – one that supports local business and does not require government investment.”
Brad Schroeder
Board President
Covington Business Association

viagra uk sellers low gmat score essay https://awakenedhospitality.com/buy/is-lamictal-cleared-by-the-kidneys/30/ http://archive.ceu.edu/store.php?treat=cimalgex-bijsluiter-cialis cialis 0 5 mg best personal essay ghostwriters for hire au easyman viagra cheap essay editor services for phd computer thesis download source free essay introductions free essay about advantages and disadvantages of modern technology http://windmillharbourmarina.org/wie-wirkt-cialis-10-mg/ https://www.thehasse.org/does/cheap-viagra-fast-supply/45/ enter source url follow site watch here emerson poet essay viagra pkg https://www.getthereatx.com/capstone/case-study-gd-topics-for-bpcl/7/ is crestor an ace inhibitor follow site https://samponline.org/blacklives/essay-contest-new/27/ fuesmide but wo prescription source benzyl iodide synthesis essay excalipoor viagra sample conclusion and recommendation for thesis partir pastillas cialis essay about mother love Covington Business Association Member Votes Regarding the Proposed Bike Share Program for St. Tammany Parish

The board of directors of the Covington Business Association polled the organization’s members at the general monthly meeting on September 6, 2017. The questions and responses were as follows:

1) Do you think that a bike sharing program should be implemented? 40 No 8 Yes
2) Do you feel that the City of Covington should dedicate $25,000 of public money to the proposed study and implementation plan? 46 No 3 Yes
3) If a bike sharing program is implemented, do you think it should be managed by an outside vendor or a local vendor? 48 Local 0 Outside
4) Would you support a bike sharing program that was funded by the St. Tammany Parish government for costs of > $1 million? 49 No 1 Yes
5) Is it safe to say that a bike share program would NOT compete with local bike rental businesses? No 44 Yes 5

Local News Opinion

STEDF Update: Following The Money

Published by:

Recently, Covington Weekly reported on changes in the composition of economic development in the parish. The following exchange between CW Correspondent Timothy Gates and the St. Tammany Economic Development Foundation took place this past week:
Email to St. Tammany Economic Development Foundation on Tuesday, September 12, 2017:
“Good Morning Tracy,
Thank you for your response in regard to my inquiry. The changes reflected in the legislation are significant.
1) I am curious about the relationship between the Northshore Community Foundation and the Parish Government; I am aware of cooperative endeavor agreements, etc., but specifically, what gives them the authority to issue a study that impacts your office, resulting in sweeping changes that include eliminating the leading 20-year+ economic agency in the parish? My understanding is that non-profit corporations (501 c3’s) are unable to influence legislation (upon review by IRS). Any commentary on this would be helpful.
2) How will these changes affect the public disclosure process, in terms of real-time information?
3) Because Mrs. Bertus represents the EDD as well, does the manager’s response to the LLA constitute an official statement from the parish with regard to the matter?
Thank you for your time. Timothy Achan Gates”
The STEDF replied with this response:
“In response to your questions:
1) For inquiries regarding the Northshore Community Foundation, the St. Tammany Parish Government, and their relationship, please contact the Northshore Community Foundation and/or the St. Tammany Parish Government directly.
2) The St. Tammany Parish Development District’s role is expanding. Beginning 1/1/18, the St. Tammany Parish Development District will be equipped to operate as the lead economic development organization in the parish.
As a political subdivision of the state of Louisiana, the St. Tammany Parish Development District will continue to be subject to Louisiana laws pertaining to open meetings, public records, official journals, etc.
3) Brenda Bertus serves at the Chief Executive Officer of the St. Tammany Economic Development Foundation (STEDF) and the Executive Director of the St. Tammany Parish Development District (STPDD, or “the District”).
The District’s response to the LLA does not constitute an official statement from the St. Tammany Parish Government, as the District is a political subdivision of the state of Louisiana, and is not a division of the parish government. I hope that these answers provide clarity.
Sincerely, Tracy Clanton, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, CLED
Records Custodian, St. Tammany Parish Development District, 21489 Koop Drive, Ste. 8, Mandeville, LA 70471
(985) 809-7593 phone (985) 809-7596 fax”
“Thank you for your time and the symbolic representation of answers to the questions sent. Best Regards, Timothy Achan Gates”

If it cannot be seen clearly, there is no transparency. If there are no answers to simple questions, there is no accountability.

St. Tammany Parish Government has yet to respond with a statement regarding this matter. The only thing clear in the answers from the STEDF is that our government is over-complicated to the degree that one must be a lawyer or a robot to understand how it actually operates. Since CW began writing about the STEDF, we have seen the termination of Don Shea from the STEDD for agency to agency emails that were derogatory to the public, changes in the board composition such that public officials are no longer allowed to serve on the STEDF board (circa 2014, both Mayors Cooper and Drennan were members), and now, the apparent end of the STEDF in its current role in January 2018.
Ch-Ch-Changes… Time to Face the Strange The Parish Government deflects when it should cooperate. In the St. Tammany Chamber West’s recent letter to Mrs. Pat Brister, it is stated that the recent EDD tax should be repealed, in very strong language, referring to it as Taxation Without Representation and discriminatory with regard to application. At this point in the game, a third run may be a shot in the foot for Brister & Co.
Timothy Achan Gates, covweekly@gmail.com

Featured Posts General Local Events Local News Shop Local

This Week in Downtown Covington

Published by:

Sunset at the Landing takes place this Friday evening at Columbia Street Landing. The free concert series is brought to you by the City of Covington, the Covington Farmer’s Market and Heritage Bank of St. Tammany. This month’s concert features Noel Tannen and the Filthy No-No’s followed by the Chris Lenox Group.

Noelle and The Filthy No-Nos are a New York based band whose sound is a synthesis of Soul, Jazz and a touch of Rock and Roll. Noelle Tannen’s eclectic vocal approach defies any single standard, ranging from delightfully innocent to aggressively ragged. In turn, her band meets the demands of such acoustic versatility. Delivering a satisfying oomph of harmonic complexity and rhythmic articulation to support the delivery of a neo-sirens song. Noelle’s current base of operations is New Orleans.

Chris Lenox is a member of Toonces and a solo recording artist on Bubble Bath Records. Previous projects include The Consortium of Genius, Rik Slave and The Phantoms and the Bloomin’ Onions. The Chris Lenox Group is Jon Arceneaux on Drums, Rex Gregory on Keyboards and Sax, Chris Lenox with Guitar and Vocals and Owen Pascual on Bass. Bring a picnic basket down to the landing with a chair or a blanket, or enjoy the many dining options in historic downtown Covington.

Brooks’ Bike Shop and Jolly Roger Paddler’s Club Team up for Pedal Paddle

Pedal Paddle is this Saturday, August 19, 2017. It starts with a fun bike ride to the 4th Avenue Landing. Drop off the bikes and get into the river, paddling back up to Columbia Street Landing. Entry is $10/ person (includes transport for your bike and kayak or board). BBQ at Brooks’ bike shop after. Contact Patrick Brooks for reservations and rentals at 985-237-3658.

Art Association To coordinate August opening with Covington White Linen

Please join the St. Tammany Art Association Saturday, August 19, 2017, for the closing of the 52nd Annual Summer Show and the opening of the August/September Members’ exhibit from 6 to 9 pm. Come early to enjoy a bit of insight from the Summer Show’s award winning artists and Juror Bill Fagaly. Doors open at 5:15 and talks begin at 5:30 pm. Admission is free.

Covington’s White Linen Night is a completely community driven cultural Arts event, created to promote Downtown Covington’s wonderful array of businesses. Beginning this year, all proceeds will benefit the Public Art for Covington Fund, which aims to place meaningful artwork around Downtown Covington for locals and visitors to enjoy. Most area businesses have elected to donate 10% of their sales the evening of the event towards the fund, administered through the non-profit Northshore Community Foundation. This means patrons can come out in their white attire and enjoy everything that historic Downtown Covington has to offer, knowing 10% of every dollar spent will further improve our community and quality of life.

For more information about the event, call the Covington Business Association at 504-439-2543.
For more information about how the Public Art for Covington Fund and the Northshore Community Foundation improve our community and quality of life , call the foundation at 985-893-8757.

More Downtown Covington Events

The Friends of the Library of West St. Tammany Monthly Book Sale Hadden Hall, home to the Friends, holds over 30,000 gently used, donated books sorted into fiction and a wide variety of non-fiction categories such as Cookbooks, Nature, History, Gardening, Biography, Computers, Large Print, Puzzles, etc. and much more. Our media section has vinyl records, CD’s, DVD’s, Audio Books, Large Print, Puzzles, etc. And we have an entire room filled with children’s books! There’s a lot to explore! All proceeds from each sale benefit the Library branches of West St. Tammany. Prices start at $.25 cents!

The Friends of the Library of West St. Tammany is an all volunteer, non-profit organization whose proceeds support the St. Tammany Parish Library. The group holds a monthly book sale on the 3rd Saturday and the preceding Friday of each month from 9:00am – 5:00pm.

Project Homecoming 2017, sponsored by the Junior League of Greater Covington, takes place this Saturday, August 19, 2017, at 529 N. Columbia Street from 9 a.m. To noon. Find Free & Gently Worn homecoming dresses, shoes and accessories for local high school students. Email: jlgcprojectprom@gmail.com for more information.

Featured Posts General Local News Non Profit Spotlight Opinion Shop Local

Non-Objective Critique Of NCF Bike Share Overview

Published by:

The NCF Overview states that the NCF and the Parish have a Memorandum of Understanding, or a semi-formal agreement without contractual obligations. It appears that the Northshore Community Foundation has the authority to act on behalf of the Parish Government in the capacity of vendor procurement for this situation. The NCF is a private, non-profit organization, not a government agency, or even a quasi-government agency. If the NCF is performing administrative duties on behalf of the parish, then there is also an expectation that their activities are open to public inspection, as opposed to non-disclosure.
Budget: The NCF “intends to collect $200,000 in a Bikeshare Fund” for the project; they anticipate funding from both public and private sources. Phase I describes a $59,000 business plan. This should be provided by the consulting company or the selected vendor, not partially funded by the public.
Phase II describes implementation of a $103,000 turn-key bikeshare launch; again, public and private monies are expected in contribution to the implementation of the machinery and equipment, which in this writer’s opinion, should be the responsibility of the selected vendor to finance their own operation.
Phase III describes management and operations, which are to be determined based on the plan itself. A revenue bond would not be surprising. If the public is asked to finance it, then it should be free to the public, considering that it is purposed to give socio-economicallly challenged individuals access to transportation.
It is called Bikeshare, but it is not free, so it is not actually sharing. Users can pay hourly, daily, monthly or annual fees. If money is exchanged for the use of a thing, that still qualifies as a “rental”. To that end, the businesses in the parish that rent bikes could accomplish the same task of establishing a ‘bikeshare’ type of model at a fraction of the cost, while keeping the project entirely local. This issue is important to Covington Weekly because it is the same reason that Covington Weekly was founded. Local support is important to every community. As Mayor Cooper stated, the idea has merit; a bicycle is this writer’s sole means of transport, and bicycle travel is supported and encouraged.
The same goal may be reached with a different approach.
Timothy Gates, CW Correspondent

Local Events Local News

STAA Opens For Covington White Linen

Published by:

Covington is blessed with an abundance of cultural events and activities, including the Second Saturday Art Walk. It’s generally during this event that St. Tammany Art Association presents our new exhibition openings.
This month, with the popular Covington White Linen for Public Art falling on August 19, the third Saturday, many of our Second Saturday gallery partners and our arts patrons have requested that we opt out of the Second Saturday Artwalk, and host our opening on Aug. 19 instead.
Please join us Saturday, Aug. 19 for the closing of our 52nd Annual Summer Show and the opening of our Aug./Sept. Members’ exhibit, 6 to 9 pm. Come early to enjoy a bit of insight from the Summer Show’s award winning artists and Juror Bill Fagaly. Doors open at 5:15 and talks begin at 5:30 pm. Admission is free.

Covington’s White Linen Night is a completely community driven cultural Arts event, created to promote Downtown Covington’s wonderful array of businesses. Beginning this year, all proceeds will benefit the Public Art for Covington Fund, which aims to place meaningful artwork around Downtown Covington for locals and visitors to enjoy. Most area businesses have elected to donate 10% of their sales the evening of the event towards the fund, which is administered through the non-profit Northshore Community Foundation.

This means patrons can come out in their white attire and enjoy everything that historic Downtown Covington has to offer, knowing that 10% of every dollar spent will further improve our community and quality of life. In addition, portions of Columbia Street and Lee Lane will be blocked off for pedestrians to stroll and enjoy a variety of projected light art installations, live music, vendors of original art and hand made goods, and more in the works.

For more information about the event, call the Covington Business Association at 504-439-2543.
For more information about how the Public Art for Covington Fund and the Northshore Community Foundation improve our community and quality of life , call the foundation at 985-893-8757.

Local Events Non Profit Spotlight

Save the Date For Covington’s White Linen

Published by:

Covington’s White Linen Night is a completely community driven cultural Arts event, created to promote Downtown Covington’s wonderful array of businesses. Beginning this year, all proceeds will benefit the Public Art for Covington Fund, which aims to place meaningful artwork around Downtown Covington for locals and visitors to enjoy. Most area businesses have elected to donate 10% of their sales the evening of the event towards the fund, which is administered through the non-profit Northshore Community Foundation.

This means patrons can come out in their white attire and enjoy everything that historic Downtown Covington has to offer, knowing that 10% of every dollar spent will further improve our community and quality of life. In addition, portions of Columbia Street and Lee Lane will be blocked off for pedestrians to stroll and enjoy a variety of projected light art installations, live music, vendors of original art and hand made goods, and more in the works.

For more information about the event, call the Covington Business Association at 504-439-2543.
For more information about how the Public Art for Covington Fund and the Northshore Community Foundation improve our community and quality of life , call the foundation at 985-893-8757.

Local News Non Profit Spotlight

Statement Regarding NCF’s Bikeshare Program

Published by:

“I called Susan Bonnett (director of the Northshore Community Foundation) Monday morning to apologize for any hardship my writing may have caused her personally. She was thankful for the apology, and through the course of the conversation acknowledged that:
1) I did not address her personally in the piece
2) I was not attacking her or the organization, but addressing the implementation of a specific program
Susan Bonnett was not able to provide any specific detail that was incorrect when asked, merely that she objected to my opinions.
On that, I have provided the Covington Weekly piece, highlighted and correlating to the highlighted material in the NCF Tax Document, line by line, consecutively, for anyone who wishes to view the documents.
Susan Bonnett repeated the word transparency several times, but was not able to provide details of donors to the organization, or the means by which public monies are accounted for. The assertion (mine) that the NCF has anything to do with the Baton Rouge Area Foundation was disputed.” – Timothy Achan Gates, CW Correspondent
Contact Timothy at covweekly@gmail.com
The City of Covington’s decision regarding the bikeshare program will be discussed at an upcoming City Council meeting, more information will be posted as it is available.

Update, RE: Baton Rouge Area Foundation

On the Northshore Community Foundation’s website, at the Public Art for Covington Fund page, it states at the bottom:

“This fund is administered by the Northshore Community Foundation. This page and those that follow reference the Baton Rouge Area Foundation, our credit card processor. Your credit card statement will reflect a charge from the Baton Rouge Area Foundation.”

Although each individual may perceive things differently, it would appear that the two organizations do have something to do with one another, in a financial regard.

Featured Posts Local News

NCF St. Tammany Bike Share Overview

Published by:

From Northshore Community Foundation:
Background Thriving, progressive communities throughout the country have already established bikeshare models to serve their citizens and facilitate transportation options and drive health and wellness outcomes. In the last several years, the trend has accelerated in the south and numerous small to mid-size southern cities/regions are in varying stages of implementing bikeshare. Those communities in the process include New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Birmingham, AL, Little Rock, AR, Pensacola, FL, Columbia, SC, Lake Charles and many others.
The Northshore Community Foundation is committed to bringing a bikeshare platform to our region that can serve as an asset to our citizens, regional neighbors and visitors alike, driving tourism and economic development.
Objective The objective of bikeshare is to connect people regardless of socio-economic status to places and communities in St. Tammany with a high-performing, accessible, and sustainable transportation alternative that promotes tourism, health, and economic vitality.
Public/Partner Relationships With the valuable Tammany Trace being the infrastructure anchor for bikeshare success, it is necessary to bring together multiple political subdivision to participate in a collaborative model. The Northshore Community Foundation will act as the private sector coordinator and the expected public entities which will participate include parish government, local municipalities, recreation districts, and others. Private sector partners will be integral to the success of the project as well, and ultimately, a bikeshare operator/equipment vendor will be selected to manage the program and carry the system liability moving forward.
Bantam Strategies Bantam is an experienced, non-exclusive bikeshare consulting firm and systems operator
with in-depth knowledge of various types of equipment and operations protocols throughout the United States.
Bantam designs and implements the most sustainable, effective, and user friendly systems possible tailored to each individual region. Bantam is the lead consultant on the bikeshare rollout in Baton Rouge, their relationships in the region will benefit the Northshore by integrating solutions here that are compatible with the bikeshare systems in our super region partner cities of New Orleans and Baton Rouge. The Northshore Community Foundation and St. Tammany Parish Government have a Memorandum of Understanding in place with Bantam with the expectation of engaging their firm for a three-phase study, and implementation of bikeshare.
Budget The Northshore Community Foundation intends to collect $200,000 in a Bikeshare Fund to ultimately facilitate a bikeshare model and establish a clear plan with implementation steps to be executed. Those funds will be aggregated from Cooperative Endeavor Agreements with local governments as well as private funds raised.
Phase I of an agreement with Bantam in the amount of $59,000 will include project coordination, system feasibility and size determination, cost estimates, business proforma and and implementation plan.
Phase II of an agreement with Bantam in the amount of $103,000 will include turn-key implementation of the plan up to the bikeshare launch.
Phase III will be a management and operations agreement, the details of which will be determined by the plan itself.
General Facts About Bikeshare
Depending on study results, expected 300 bikes at 30 docking stations throughout the entire parish;
Local staff (local job creation) to maintain, manage and rebalance bikes;
Annual and daily memberships offered in addition to hourly rates;
Bikeshare vendor to hold 100% of liability on bikes and indemnify public and private partners;
Future corporate underwriting to be sold to maintain and grow system;
Data based benefits include increased tourism taxes paid, millenial work force attraction and health and wellness outcomes;
Documented increase in sales in restaurants and shops located near bikeshare locations;
Documented increase in cycling safety awareness and infrastructure in regions once bikeshare system has been established;
Bike shop owners in other cities with bike share systems site positive experience and increased sales and business after bikeshare rollouts. Quotes and references available.”
Contact Details: Susan Bonnett, Northshore Community Foundation, 985-893-8757
Lindsey West, Bantam Strategies, 205-222-4137

Featured Posts General Local News Non Profit Spotlight Opinion Shop Local

Clarification Regarding Northshore Community Foundation: What’s In A Name

Published by:

Response to last week’s article is that the Northshore Community Foundation is gathering the actual details of the project for presentation to Mayor Cooper’s office and the Covington Business Association, suggesting that the information contained within last week’s article was erroneous or inaccurate. The information presented in the Covington Weekly article came directly from nola.com, the Advocate and the Northshore Community Foundation website. Time will tell how the previously presented information will be transformed into something else.
Opinionated conclusions and suggestions are presented in the CW article, based on tax information offered by the Northshore Community Foundation, and based on past experience in researching how non-profits operate in a governmental role while avoiding the classification of being a ‘quasi-public entity’, or in this case, ‘private foundation’. The point disregarded here is that when government tells their constituency that they will not only be subsidizing a private business enterprise from out of the area, but also at the expense of existing local business, we are no longer in the realm of representative democracy.
Another comment with regard to the article claimed that it was a partisan attack on a public charity. There is nothing partisan about questioning the use of public money, or questioning projects involving public money and private enterprise, or the relationship between local governments and non profit organizations. They call it accountability.
Timothy Gates may be reached at covweekly@gmail.com.

Featured Posts Local News Non Profit Spotlight Opinion

The Northshore Community Foundation: What’s In A Name?

Published by:

The Northshore Community Foundation is recently in the news with regard to a controversial “Bike-Share” program supported by St. Tammany Parish President Pat Brister. The Foundation wants each municipality to pay $25,000 for a feasibility study costing $170,000, paid to a firm in Baton Rouge (Bantam Strategy Group). The mayors of Abita Springs and Mandeville are enthusiastic, and Covington Mayor Mike Cooper referred to the idea having merit. According to Bob Warren of nola.com, “Bantam Strategy Group will eventually do the feasibility study”, so it’s not a question of if, but when. And, even if the $170,000 study is conducted, there is no guarantee that the program will even be implemented.
The controversy, as reported in The Advocate, is that there are three businesses in the parish that rent bikes, and municipalities are being asked to contribute to an out of town firm that will not only be in direct competition to existing businesses, but also appears to have an existing relationship to the Northshore Community Foundation. The St. Tammany Parish Tourist Commission refused to provide any funding for the study, citing state law with regard to the commission: “The commission shall not exercise any function which results in competition with local retail businesses or enterprises.”
Considering a role of municipalities is to encourage, support and represent local business, this law should also apply to municipalities: “the (city) shall not exercise any function which results in competition with local retail business or enterprises.” If this sentiment is not already on the books for the City of Covington, then here is the suggestion, for whatever it’s worth.
Where is the CBA in all of this? Considering that the Covington Business Association states on their website that they “represent and advance the interest of local businesses”, there is an obligation on the part of the organization to prepare a statement in support of Patrick Brooks, who is a current CBA board member, and Brooks’ Bike Shop, a business which rents bicycles on the trace. With regard to the Parish Government, rather than presume that something is going to happen, the correct approach is to talk to the existing businesses before hand. Brooks presented a similar idea (to be funded by him) several months prior, and was told “no” by the Parish.

So what exactly is the Northshore Community Foundation? In the spirit of transparency as a public charitable trust, the NCF posts financial reports and IRS returns on their website. As usual, the disclosure of this information just leads to more questions. The NCF’s 990, 990T and 926 Redacted Federal Tax Return Form may be found at their website (northshorefoundation.org).
According to Grantspace.org, organizations considered public charities are not required to publicly disclose names and addresses of contributors. From the start, if Bantam Strategy Group contributed anything to NCF, the public would never know because the information is redacted. The document shows that NCF held net assets of $16,372,556 in 2014. Why do they need money to conduct a study for the tiny sum of $170,000?
Listed as “Supported Organizations” is the Baton Rouge Area Foundation. According to IRS.gov, “A supporting organization is a charity that carries out its exempt purposes by supporting other exempt organizations, usually other public charities. This classification is important because it is one means by which a charity can avoid classification as a private foundation, a status that is subject to a more restrictive regulatory regime.”

The NCF owns 1,000 Shares Hornbeck Offshore Services, Inc, 1,534 Shares Hancock Horizon, and 169.1891 Shares Walt Disney Co. BRAF Investment Pool is listed under “Investments – Other Securities” – $13,561,270, which would seem to indicate “Baton Rouge Area Foundation”. The section “Statement of Activities Outside of the United States” lists Central America/Caribbean Investments totalling $3,954,540. The section “Grants and Other Assistance” lists the City of Covington awarding a $95,300 grant to the foundation, along with a non-cash award of $141,00 in Land. And another $25k?
What is unsettling is that all this suggests that financially, an organization named the “Northshore Community Foundation” seems to be more involved in Baton Rouge (which is where Bantam is located) and outside of the United States, rather than in St. Tammany Parish.
The concept of Local Control isn’t going away. If you support the continuation of local business, please call or email your Covington City Council representative to voice your opinion about separating corporate influence from our local government, or at the very least, supporting the local businesses in our community.
Contact Timothy Achan Gates: covweekly@gmail.com

Local News Opinion

Brief Overview and Analysis of the Northshore Visioning Project

Published by:

The Northshore Visioning Project is the initiative of the Northshore Community Foundation, who formed a task force comprised of representatives of the private and public sectors.  The task force was formed to answer the question of what the region should look like in twenty years, creating a vision that maintains the desirability of the Northshore through a Regional Visioning Process.
The $90,000 dollar Strategic Plan by SSA Consultants of Baton Rouge contains some very interesting observations on the process of economic development, some of which has been covered in local media.  Two of the bigger points of contention so far have been the merging of the East and West Chambers of Commerce and the question of how to handle the Tourist Commission.
The following passage is a condensed overview of the Interview Findings and Task Force Results:
There is a dilution of civic leadership and a strain on resources and funding due to the large number of non profits and civic organizations on the Northshore.  Some reported a desire to see more representation from Washington and Tangipahoa Parishes in regional efforts.  At the same time, respondents said interplay between the Northshore Region and other economic development organizations is confusing, specifically citing the examples of GNO, Inc. and the LA Department of Economic Development.  Other findings include the recognition that there is a wide divergence of opinion on the role and scope of economic development, and the maintenance of the region’s quality of life is a high priority.
With a particular interest in the mechanism of economic development in the Parish, the next recommendation is particularly interesting:
“The first steps involved in moving toward a more high impact regional model would entail the consolidation of the organizations that have the similar missions and programmatic elements.  The first opportunity rests with the consolidation of the St. Tammany Parish Economic Development Foundation (STEDF), the St. Tammany Parish Development District and the St. Tammany Parish Economic Development Department.  The ability to leverage the strengths of each of these entities… cannot be underestimated.”       (Hybrid Model/Merging Elements)

The significance of this suggestion is that a large portion of Covington Weekly’s interest in the process of economic development has centered directly around the specific role of the St. Tammany Economic Development Foundation.  It is the opinion of Covington Weekly that every individual paying taxes, whether a private citizen or business owner, is a stakeholder in local economic development, giving each said individual a say in that process.
“…the elimination of duplicated programs and services and the redeployment of those funds will provide an immediate improvement in the efficient and effective use of public and private dollars.”   (emphasis mine)
Identification of a need to improve the way that public dollars are used is also suggestive of a need for greater transparency with regard to public dollars in the realm of economic development. This has been one of the main points of divergence with issues addressed in CW and how the economic development process actually operates in St. Tammany Parish.
According to the St. Tammany Parish Development District Board of Commissioners Minutes, October 13, 2016:  “Chadwick Collings provided an overview of the Northshore Community Foundation’s Visioning Project.  The report offered no concrete recommendations, but does discuss the possible dissolution of STEDF with the District taking on STEDF’s role.  Legally it is possible, but there are numerous legislative/policy issues that would need to be addressed.”
The following is excerpted from the section, Key Priorities for the Northshore 2016-2020:
“There is a significant schism between the “no growth” or “slow growth” advocates and those who see the future being shaped by the attraction of manufacturers and greater industrial site development… the anti growth factions and well publicized protests and lawsuits will push away the best and most attractive companies.  St. Tammany Parish and the Northshore could find it increasingly difficult to find companies and jobs that will fit their desired mold and will not threaten the region’s quality of life.” (emphasis mine)
Again, it should be pointed out that although differences of opinion exist, those differences of opinion have just as much legitimacy as a briefcase full of money.  A lot of time is spent talking about quality of life, which is generally subjective depending on who is responding.
After five years of promoting and participating in the great events happening in downtown Covington, business owners and citizens continue to ask why the Parish is so intent on pouring millions of development dollars in outlying areas, which will only compete with municipal activities, while our historic downtown area still has vacant commercial space available.  A simple suggestion for the whole “visioning process” –  more inclusive public input.
Timothy Gates, CW Correspondent 985-288-9609

Local Events Local News Non Profit Spotlight Shop Local

Covington’s White Linen Night This Saturday Celebrates the Arts Community

Published by:

White Linen NightHistoric Downtown Covington’s second annual White Linen Night will take place on Saturday, August 15, 2015, from six to nine in the evening. The event is community-organized and paid for by the generous contributions of local business owners with the net proceeds donated to the Public Art for Covington Fund.

The Public Art for Covington Fund is a non-profit fund administered through the Northshore Community Foundation. The mission of this charitable endeavor is to place art in Covington that reflects the rich history and culture of the city, to reflect and reinforce Covington’s reputation and standing as an artist’s community.

Participating restaurants, bars and retail shops have agreed to donate ten percent of their sales for the night to the fund or have donated a fee towards covering the costs of decorations and publicity for the event. Some highlights of the event include: live projection art projects around town, including an interactive light painting and a projection and musical piece honoring the work of Walker Percy in the Southern Hotel’s courtyard; the inaugural Trailhead Art Market; a featured Pimms Cup cocktails at participating bars and restaurants; live music in the streets.
See more at the White Linen Night Facebook page.