Legislative Assistant : Debbie Ortego
Email Dove, Gordon
Address: P.O. Box 629
Houma, LA 70361
Capitol House Switch Band: (225) 342-6945
Capitol House Fax: (225)342-8336
- District #: House District 1
- Party: Republican
- Caucus Membership: Acadiana Delegation, Louisiana Republican Legislative Delegation, Louisiana Rural Caucus
- Occupation: Business Owner
- Education: Terrebonne High School;
Nicholls State University
- Spouse: Mona
- Year Elected: 2003
- Last Year Eligible(Term Limit): 2016
- 2007 Election
Dove goes into his second term after facing no opposition during the most recent election cycle. In 2003, though, he captured the seat in a runoff by only five votes, besting GOP attorney Tom Watkins and replacing former House Speaker Hunt Downer. Expect Dove to keep building on his trademark issue, which is funding for the maintenance of Louisiana’s barrier islands, considered the first line of defense against hurricanes and coastal erosion. He’ll also be looking for more of a role in the House Republican Caucus.
Registered Voters by Parish: Lafourche 7.5%, Terrebonne 92.5%
Municipalities/Communities Represented: Bayou Cane, Gray, Houma, Shriever
Southland Mall and Terrebonne General Medical Center are among the largest economic drivers. The district also has a mix of industrial, residential and retail areas.
Overall, it is consistently in the top tier of Louisiana cities enjoying job growth.
Mardi Gras is likewise taken very seriously in Houma and represents a substantial tax base – it is, after all, the second largest Carnival celebration outside of the Crescent City. Despite its size, the district has a diverse media market with three daily newspapers, a local television channel and a handful of talk radio outlets.
Social: The district consists of affluent residential neighborhoods in the Houma area and relatively-new middle-to-upper-class neighborhoods along La. 311 and in Summerfield. The district also includes the Barrios neighborhood, an established residential area with one of the top public elementary schools in Terrebonne Parish. There is a strong Cajun influence in the area, which has slowly picked up new residents moving away from the rapidly-eroding coastline. Pockets of poverty on the outskirts of Houma do exist, although crime is not a major issue.
Political: This district is George W. Bush country (he carried 71 percent of the vote in 2004). Bobby Jindal also does well here. While supportive of Democratic candidates, particularly if they are Catholics and have French names, the seat has been a Republican hold for several years now. There is a strong business community in Houma and fishing issues are highly controversial, as local residents differ over the relative merits of commercial and recreational fishing interests. Family values are key, but voters’ major issues involve flood control, hurricane protection and transportation infrastructure.
- A Republican entrepreneur, Gordon Dove is a conservative, pro-business vote in the Legislature. Dove says he ran for office in the first place because he saw a need for more business-minded leaders in Baton Rouge. Dove is president and owner of Vacco Marine, an environmental vacuum-truck and tank-cleaning company. He is also part owner of the Copeland’s restaurant franchises in Houma and Lafayette, and owns the Doveland Corporation, a real estate firm.
- Economic development and health care top Dove’s statewide agenda, while local issues, such as hurricane protection, rule the roost. Dove has emerged as a leader on natural resources issues.
- As chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, Dove will be a coastal floor leader for some years to come. In particular, he is interested in raising awareness of the importance of coastal passes and barrier islands.
- On health care, he supports funding the state’s charity hospital system by lifting existing Medicare and Medicaid caps placed on the hospitals. On coastal protections, the planned north-south corridor for hurricane evacuation and the funding of the Morganza-to-the-Gulf hurricane protection system are top objectives.