According to a report in the Sunday Advocate Bobby Jindal’s assistant director of constituent services, David Pearce, has been hired by the La. Department of Children and Family as a “legislative liaison.”
The newspaper report goes on to say “According to documents submitted to Civil Service, the position serves as a lobbyist and advocate on behalf of the agency.” (Emphasis mine.)
Lobbyist & advocate defined
Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines what lobbyists do as: to try to influence government officials to make decisions for or against something. (Emphasis mine.)
“Advocate” is defined as a “person who argues for or supports a cause or policy.” (Emphasis mine.)
Assuming the news report is correct that Pearce’s job description includes lobbying, it appears that he is in violation of (more…)
Add comment March 9, 2014 1:13 pm
When U.S. Rep. John Dingell announced his retirement from Congress last month, the Michigan Democrat was characteristically blunt about why he’s stepping down after 58 years in office.
“I find serving in the House to be obnoxious,” the 87-year-old Dingell, the longest-serving member of Congress in U.S. history, told the Detroit News.
Someone should share Dingell’s secret with the horde of candidates running for Congress in Louisiana’s 6th Congressional District. Some of these office seekers might be surprised to learn that the frenzied, frustrating life of a junior House member is about as glamorous and interesting as service on a parish council, only with considerably less power.
Actually, as one House member from California has concluded, serving on her (more…)
Add comment March 7, 2014 11:32 am
Shreveport/Caddo Parish is known by outsiders for cut-throat, often vicious dealings with anyone who fails to follow the rules of the “Power Brokers.” The Jim Leslie murder in Baton Rouge still resonates with many. Quite often it’s related as “You only get warned once.” Edgar G. Robinson obviously taught some good lessons.
Today’s Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC) struggle to find new leadership has taken lessons from gangster profiles, and Caddo Commissioner John Escude must be trying to impress others that he really means business if you don’t “toe the line” he expects.
Email attributed to John Escude:
From: John Escude <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: bowmanservesus <email@example.com>; dcox <firstname.lastname@example.org>; Douglawyer <Douglawyer@aol.com>; (more…)
Add comment March 6, 2014 3:25 pm
Tax liens are a problem to John Q. Citizen, – - and even more so for aspiring political candidates as Sam Jenkins can attest. On Sunday (March 1) Jenkins pulled the plug, for the second time, on a press conference to announce his run for Shreveport Major.
The second planned major event was set for Tuesday, March 4. This time it was heavily publicized, and outspoken Caddo Commissioner Ken Epperson had forwarded emails urging support for Jenkins. The only reason given by Jenkins for this cancellation was that he had to get his law office affairs in order.
Jenkins was most likely referring to tax liens, – - not his clients as he implied. The Louisiana Office of Unemployment Insurance has filed liens against Jenkins’ law office (Sam L. Jenkins, Jr. A Professional (more…)
Add comment March 6, 2014 3:00 pm
Most people in northwest Louisiana are aware that Caddo Parish has a feather in its cap with regards to its partner in animal welfare—namely the low cost/high volume spay/neuter clinic on Line Avenue called Robinson’s Rescue. For the past five plus years, Robinson’s Rescue has performed more than 26,000 spay and neuter surgeries for area pets. Most of these surgeries are targeted towards our low-income neighbors who, without the assistance of Robinson’s Rescue, cannot afford the cost of preventing their pets from reproducing.
The mission statement of Robinson’s Rescue is: To eliminate the euthanasia of adoptable dogs and cats in our region, prevent unwanted litters, and end the dog and cat over-population in Northwest Louisiana.
Add comment March 6, 2014 2:43 pm
by Elliott Stonecipher
When I introduced this subject with an article the day before yesterday, I stressed the importance of the search for a new Executive Director of the Caddo Parish / Shreveport Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC). I did so because that selection is an absolute key to a longstanding and critically necessary reform of the public body. I stressed, too, the open and disturbing desire and intention of some Caddo Parish Commission members to hijack the MPC board’s specific legal authority to conduct that search – and make that important personnel decision – independently.
The next chapter in this important story was written today in an MPC meeting led by businesswoman and Chair, Lea Desmarteau. After over two weeks of taking serious opposition fire from some few Caddo Commissioners, Ms. Desmarteau led the MPC board today in doing precisely what many here believe is critical to this community: acting in open and solid defense of the rule of law.
Without unnecessarily repeating ground covered in my Monday piece, all readers are urged to take a moment to consider the following Louisiana state law. As you do so, please note that the statute at issue is specific to the Caddo / Shreveport MPC, as detailed in the preceding statute, Louisiana Rev. Stat. § 33:140.6, Metropolitan planning commission; creation and appointment. Just following is the statute most directly at (more…)
Add comment March 6, 2014 10:18 am
On February 14th Shreveport filed litigation against Grigsby and Associates in the First Judicial District Court in Shreveport. The path to the actual filing has followed the western indian wars of the 1870′s as skirmishes through the mountains of the Mexican frontier. Everyone knew the indian nations were destined to defeat, but the ritual had to play itself out.
The Dakota Indians have been credited with the saying appropriate to this City Council battle with Mayor Glover’s attempt to revive Calvin Grigsby as the bond attorney for the city. Their saying was: “when you discover the the horse you are riding is dead, the best strategy is to dismount.”
It was always known by insiders that Grigsby was over billing the city, and monies went (more…)
Add comment March 5, 2014 11:19 am
Ken Epperson’s recent Soapbox rant accusing the Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC) of being a “train wreck” is a sad commentary by a very highly paid part time public official unfairly criticizing a volunteer board working with poorly qualified, publicly paid staff. Epperson is always known to have a secondary agenda, and a close reading of his column clears reveals his motive–to have an unqualified person who happens to be a minority like Epperson appointed as the MPC Executive Director.
The MPC Board has 9 members–4 appointed by the Caddo Commission, 4 by the Shreveport City Council and 1 mutually agreed upon by the 2 bodies. Both the City and the Parish fund the MPC and its Zoning Board of Appeals; the MPC has planning jurisdiction over the City of Shreveport and a 5 mile district outside of the city limits. Its members serve voluntarily and without pay, often dealing (more…)
Add comment March 4, 2014 9:55 am
by Elliott Stonecipher
Some say it is axiomatic, and some say it is cynical: good deeds don’t go unpunished. Interpretations aside, it is a fact that volunteering our time to serve on local government boards is not a bath of warmth and bubbles. For evidence, look no further than the Caddo Commission work session on February 18, 2014. Presented there was a crash-course in what has gone wrong in volunteer “public service,” here, a place where the rule of law is too often of little meaningful consequence.
The direct subject is the Metropolitan Planning Commission’s (MPC) replacement of its former, now-retired, Executive Director, Charles Kirkland. The broader – and real – subject is the desire of some Caddo Commissioners and others, reportedly including Mayor Glover, to manipulate the MPC and its selection process for self-serving reasons. To do so, involved officials must intimidate the mostly-new MPC board into surrendering their legal authority to do the job.
Given that the subject events were not covered or reported by the news media, we rely on two sources of direct information about this subject – an op-ed by Commissioner Ken Epperson in the Shreveport Times on February 28, 2014, and a recording, now posted on YouTube, of the subject Commission work session on February 18, 2014. I have spent extensive time, as well, in (more…)
Add comment March 3, 2014 3:13 pm
why would two administrative officials leave just before legislative session?
With the 2014 regular session of the legislature less than two weeks away, there have already been a couple of interesting developments that could prevent lawmakers from learning how a federal investigation of a major contract came about in the first place.
There already is speculation that two recent resignations in the Jindal administration may have something to do with avoiding testimony before legislative committees that may wish to look into the controversial $284 million contract between the Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) and CNSI.
Subpoenas could be issued for Paul Rainwater, Jerry Phillips, and Bruce Greenstein but if they choose to ignore subpoenas, there is little legislators could do about it since legislative subpoenas do not carry the same weight as a court subpoena—that is to say legislative subpoenas, unlike (more…)
Add comment February 27, 2014 6:04 pm