Councilmen honored at last meeting of 2012

Lisa Yates @Lisa_editor

The Gonzales City Council meeting Monday night marked the last meeting of the year.

It also marked the last meeting for Councilman Ronald "Joe" Waguespack and Councilman John Cagnolatti, both of whom did not win re-election this year.

Cagnolatti said it has been an honor and a privilege serving on the council since taking office in January, 2009.

"I truly enjoyed serving the people of Gonzales," he said. "I believe I've done that job well thanks to my lovely wife Pam. I couldn't have done it without her."

Cagnolatti also sent best wishes to his successor Gary Lacombe and Waguespack's successor Timothy Vessel.

"I know they will do well," he said.

Mayor Barney Arceneaux thanked the outgoing councilmen for their dedicated time given to Gonzales and honored them with plaques.

"This is bittersweet," he said, choking back tears. "I want to thank you both. You both have done a lot for the community."

He called Councilman Ronald "Joe" Waguespack "the dean of city council" having served for 28 years.

Waguespack joked, "I served five years because no one ran against me."

Born and raised in Gonzales, Waguespack said he was proud of his "great city" and his accomplishments as councilman.

"Gonzales is the envy of most cities in this state," he said, adding the reason is people trust their city council.

Waguespack also shared the secret of his own success as councilman.

"I had a formula," he said. "I said if it is good for the city, than I'm going to vote for it."

Using his characteristic humor, Waguespack thanked his wife for her support during his time on the council.

"Men need a little direction," he said.

Gary Lacombe and Timothy Vessel will take their place on the city council at the reorganization meeting, Jan. 14, 2013.