Gov. Bobby Jindal has appointed Michele Ezell to serve on the Lafayette City-Parish Council. Ezell, an Independent who is a co-owner of Tsunami Restaurants and a former executive committee member of the Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce, will serve as an interim replacement to District 6 councilman Bruce Conue, who resigned on Oct. 1. Ezell will represent District 6 until a special election in April decides who will fill out the remaining two and a half years of Conque's term. According to the Home Rule Charter, Ezell will be prevented from running in next year's special election for the District 6 council seat.
Jindal's decision comes on the same day that the city-parish council officially deferred the decision on the appointment to the governor. The council met on Oct. 1 to vote on the appointment. However, council members split 4-4 in voting on the decision, with half the council electing Democrat Sam Dore, who ran against Conque last year, and the other half backing Republican attorney Judy Kennedy. The votes fell along party lines. Dore, Kennedy, and Ezell were among five official applicants to the council asking to be considered for the appointment. By charter, the appointment goes to the governor in the event the council cannot reach a majority decision. Jindal was free to appoint anyone who met the voting and district residency requirements, whether they had applied or not.