WHEREAS, the New Orleans Court Building, which occupies the 400 block of Royal in the French Quarter, was constructed as a joint project between the city of New Orleans and state of Louisiana during the period of 1907 to 1910;
WHEREAS, in October of 1910, the Louisiana Supreme Court moved from the Cabildo to join the Orleans Court of Appeal and various state and city offices in the New Orleans Court Building, where it stayed until the 1950's;
WHEREAS, when the Louisiana Supreme Court began to outgrow its present location on Loyola Avenue, the court began studying the feasibility of returning to the New Orleans Court Building (hereafter the "Royal Street Project");
WHEREAS, the Royal Street Project is the site of the Louisiana Supreme Court, the Louisiana Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal, the Law Library of Louisiana, the Louisiana Judicial Administrator's Office, a satellite office of the Louisiana Attorney General, and a museum or tourist information center; and
WHEREAS, considering the historical significance of the building, the high cost of renovation projects, the project's fast-approaching completion date, and the complications that can normally arise in a project of this size and nature, the interests of the citizens of the state of Louisiana would be best served by the continuation of the Royal Street Project Advisory Board, composed of local businessmen and attorneys who have earned the public's confidence as experienced developers, to advise the Louisiana Supreme Court and Division of Administration with regard to all plans and contracts for the project;
NOW THEREFORE I, KATHLEEN BABINEAUX BLANCO, Governor of the state of Louisiana, by virtue of the authority vested by the Constitution and laws of the state of Louisiana, do hereby order and direct as follows:
SECTION 1: The Royal Street Project Advisory Board (hereafter "Board") is reestablished within the executive department, Office of the Governor.
SECTION 2: The duties of the Board shall include, but are not limited to, the following:
A. Providing advice to the Division of Administration and the Louisiana Supreme Court regarding the expenditure of all funds and all contracts, bids, proposals, and plans associated with the Royal Street Project;
B. Providing consulting advice for all planning, development, and/or construction associated with the Royal Street Project; and
C. Preparing the documentation for all future requests for legislative appropriations for the Royal Street Project and presenting the appropriation requests to the Commissioner of Administration and the legislative committees and/or leadership of the Louisiana Legislature.
SECTION 3: The Board shall consist of at least five (5) members appointed by and serving at the pleasure of the governor. The membership of the Board shall be composed as follows:
A. The chief justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court, or the chief justice's designee; and
B. At least four (4) members selected from the New Orleans business community who are well-known and respected for possessing an expertise in historical renovations and/or the development and management of significant building construction projects.
SECTION 4: The governor shall appoint the chair and vice-chair from the membership of the Board. All other officers, if any, shall be elected by the Board from its membership.
SECTION 5: The Board shall meet at the call of the chair.
SECTION 6: Support staff, facilities, and resources for the Board shall be provided by the Division of Administration and/or the Louisiana Supreme Court.
SECTION 7: Board members shall not receive compensation or a per diem for serving on the Board. Nonetheless, contingent on the availability of funds, Board members who are not employees or elected public officials of the state of Louisiana or a political subdivision thereof may receive reimbursement for actual travel expenses, in accordance with PPM 49, and upon advance written approval of the commissioner of administration.
SECTION 8: All departments, commissions, boards, offices, entities, agencies, and officers of the state of Louisiana, or any political subdivision thereof, are authorized and directed to cooperate with the Board in implementing the provisions of this Order.
SECTION 9: This Order is effective upon signature and shall continue in effect until amended, modified, terminated, or rescinded by the governor, or terminated by operation of law.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have set my hand officially and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of Louisiana, at the Capitol, in the city of Baton Rouge, on this 20th day of August, 2004.
Kathleen Babineaux Blanco
Secretary of State