KILLIAN – An outspoken critic of newly inaugurated Mayor Gillis Windham resigned from his post on the Board of Aldermen.
Paul Canik, in a letter to Windham, announced his immediate resignation after 4½ terms on the board. He served under four mayors.
Canik had been an ally of interim Mayor Peter Bock, whom Windham defeated in a Nov. 6 election.
“It’s my opinion that the current administration and I have strong conflicting ideas concerning the reformation of Killian in the interest of all Killian residents,” he said in a written message to The News.
“Unfortunately, the recent legislative audit findings and recommendations have fallen on deaf ears.”
Neither cited any love lost.
“Although the past interim mayor made an attempt to bring the town back into compliance, a majority of aldermen felt the old way of conducting town business was plausible,” Canik said.
“I will no longer be a part of these actions and have resigned as Killian alderman.”
Windham expressed no regret over Canik’s resignation.
"Paul Canik is every bit as delusional as the interim mayor, Peter Bock,” Windham said. “The people of Killian and the aldermen alike are glad he’s gone.”
Canik and Bock had been at odds with then-Councilman Windham and other members since the termination of Chief of Police Dennis Hill, who pleaded guilty in December to a charge of malfeasance in office.
District Court Judge Bob Morrison sentenced Hill to one year of probation and another year of suspended probation. He must also reimburse the town $994 related to unauthorized use of a town credit card and falsifying overtime.
According to the findings of report from Louisiana Legislative Auditor Darryl Purpera, Hill falsified time sheets, used town credit cards for personal use and did not follow proper procedure on the filing of traffic citations.
Then-Mayor Craig McGhee cast the tie-breaking vote on a 2-2 deadlock to terminate Hill, who was appointed police chief in 2008.
The dismissal not only split the council, but drew anger from supporters of Hill, who was held in high regard with residents in the town and much of Livingston Parish.
The court could expunge the crime from Hill's record one year after he reimburses the town, according to his attorney, Sherman Mack.
Hill, who was terminated by the council in 2017, entered the plea in a pretrial conference.
The removal of the guilty plea from the records could open the door for Hill to resume work in law enforcement, although after his trial he expressed no interest in returning to law enforcement.
Hill said outside the courtroom he was glad to have the issue behind him.
Canik and Bock were also critical of the town’s handling of the missing gear from the now-disbanded diving team.
Windham has said the town is working with Mark Harrell, director of the Livingston Parish Office of Emergency Preparedness, to pay for the missing equipment.
The News is interested in your feedback! Please tap here to leave some thoughts on our feedback form or follow this link: