The City of Shreveport quietly settled its million dollar claim for unpaid parking fees for a paltry sum of $80,000 in March of this year. To collect this sum, attorney fees in excess of $96,000 were paid through June of this year to a Colorado law firm. Additional attorney fees were paid to two Shreveport law firms – - one to investigate the parking lot mess and render a report to the City Council and the other to coordinate and monitor the Colorado firm and handle local litigation. The total fees paid for legal services exceeded the settlement by at least $45,000, if all the settlement moneys are paid.
The Shreveport Airport Authority (“SAA”) is an agency of the City of Shreveport; its Board members are appointed by the Mayor. The Board members and the mayor hire the director, subject to the Council approval.
In 2002 the SAA board members awarded Nationwide Parking Service of (more…)
Add comment December 5, 2013 3:00 pm
There is a rule in competitive games: It’s not over until it’s over. As long as the game is still going, there is a chance that someone who started out not doing so well can “make a comeback” and do much better. Sometimes everyone is pulling for the underdog, pardon our pun.
The same applies to the life of governmental manipulations and legal battles. It’s not over until it’s over. As long as your bill, motion, proposal, assertion, case in court, whatever you are fighting to succeed has a (more…)
Add comment December 4, 2013 7:16 am
Controversy as well as investigations are nothing new to Shreveport City Marshal Charlie Caldwell or his key deputies. Voter intimidation is now added as the election cycle is less than twelve months out. KTBS reporter Gerry May found clear evidence that Caldwell’s senior deputy and former Bossier City Marshal candidate Carl Richard has begun intimidating voters who place challenger campaign signs in or on their properties.
Two voters stated clearly to KTBS that Richard had aggressively denied their right to support an opposing candidate. KTBS has gone so far as to ask the U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley of the Western District of Louisiana for an interpretation of the federal voter intimidation law. The response seems to leave no room for interpretation, as written by the technical legal writer for the U.S. Attorney, Henri Lejeune:
“U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley stated that voter intimidation is (more…)
Add comment December 2, 2013 4:47 pm
by Elliott Stonecipher
For those of you within reach of the Shreveport Times, you may have read in either its online edition or Sunday’s print edition an op-ed I have written about the LA Hwy. 3132 Extension. The op-ed is as precise a summary of this issue as can be written within a 400-word limit. Please consider these few additional points.
The current position of those on the other side of this issue was set out in a front-page Times article a few weeks ago. Among those of us who have done this (pro bono) work for 2-1/2 years, nothing surprises us anymore from these officials and those whose work they are doing, but this was a breathtaking corker. According to the spokesperson for the other side, NLCOG (Northwest Louisiana Council of Governments) boss man Kent Rogers, the Hwy. 3132 Extension is being blocked by the Finish 3132 Coalition. This from the man who, along with Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover, convened (more…)
Add comment December 2, 2013 10:03 am
No, this is not a trick question, – - but it’s a primary real reason Caddo Commissioners are considering a personnel policy change concerning residency. And the answer to the question is “no”.
At a work session this past week, an ordinance was introduced to require Caddo Commission employees to live in the parish. The ordinance applies to all new employees hired after December 31st of this year. Beginning January 1 2015, parish residency is a requirement for promotions to management, supervisory or director positions. The new ordinance grandfathers current parish employees, who would not be required to move to the parish.
The residency issue has been a topic of discussion for several years by Commissioners, and there is little doubt that Administrator Woody Wilson’s continued residence outside the parish is the primary engine pushing this debate. Dr. Wilson is the highest paid Commission employee ($175,000 plus benefits); he is (more…)
Add comment November 28, 2013 4:00 pm
Taxpayer money and city resources have been squandered in Mayor Glover’s unnecessary, ego-driven legal squabble with the Shreveport Dog Park Alliance (SDPA). Even when the City Council voted unanimously to compel Glover to sign for and initiate construction of a dog park on the river front, he refused.
At this point, Glover retained independent counsel, and taxpayers have covered the tab for over $35,000 as the mayor loses at each hearing in court. His next court date may result in a trip to jail or worse. So, Glover’s additional extension (more legal fees) on December 2 is just another waste.
Later, Glover recognized all reasonable channels of legal (more…)
Add comment November 27, 2013 9:49 pm
Mayor Cedric B. Glover has made history for Shreveport in his abject contempt for both citizens, representing the dog park alliance, and the City Council, in defying the will of a unified body. Now, with the Louisiana court system breathing down his neck for failure to comply with district court rulings and spending over $30,000 taxpayer dollars to justify his contempt, his last maneuver is to get the council to revoke their resolution in support of the dog park.
With a revocation of the resolution, Glover intends to tell the court that the council never really intended to have “that” dog park. And, in defying the intent of the citizens, he has paid for attorneys, provoked citizen rage and pushed all city projects backwards at untold cost to all except those supporters who feed at the public trough.
3:00 Tuesday City Council!
Tuesday, November 26, at 3PM at Government Plaza many dog-park advocates and upset citizens will attend the masquerade of the mayor to justify the failures of his management of Shreveport. Shame, shame on those who would condone these practices.
Citizens deserve far better leadership, so perhaps it’s time to start picking the next mayor.
Add comment November 26, 2013 2:31 pm
Even though the elections for local judges are almost a year away (November 4, 2014), Caddo lawyers are lining up to run for judgeships for both district and city judgeships. Outside the legal community, few if any local voters are concerned, — having just endured a lifeless judicial campaign in Caddo Parish that had a record low voter turnout. And in reality, judicial campaigns rarely invoke much public interest outside family, friends and the barristers who are bombarded with requests to donate to the campaigns.
Once elected, judges have virtual kingship; rarely are incumbents challenged, much less defeated. Thus, in most instances, a judicial election is for a well paid, lifetime job with very good benefits and social status. Whether deserved or not, the “judge” title opens doors and bestows certain privileges that many seek, and obviously enjoy. Be that as it may, here is the current lineup of known prospects to join the black robe club.
Caddo District Judge Scott Crichton is seeking (more…)
Add comment November 21, 2013 4:00 pm
Mayor Cedric B. Glover and City Council Chairman Michael Corbin emerged from an executive session November 18, 2013, strongly hinting that there would soon be resolution to the Hamel’s Dog Park “poop-doggle.” No specifics were given, however, the record indicates the mayor must do significant “compliance” prior to any resolution. And, the record further indicated that the mayor’s signing hand must act in accordance with his words (sign the agreement!)
Complete records of the district court are now available for the public. These records clearly demonstrate that the mayor has used public resources and squandered ample opportunities to resolve the issues prior to the end of 2013. Citizens have donated significant money and time toward a recreational park that was originally fully funded prior to the mayor’s May, 2012 significant requirements to make a small park into a “Taj Mahal” theater.
From a chain link fence with a water well with doggie-disposal stations, the “Taj Mahal” became a public restroom, attendance park with major requirements of wrought-iron fencing, gated-subdivision entrances, water features and parking for the masses. Other cities have surpassed Shreveport by opening $8.000 to $100,000 parks. The Glover-manipulated park has gone from the $280,000 gift of the Red River Waterway Commission to a MILLION DOLLAR PLUS MONEY PIT.
The public should read and note the mayor’s many contradictions and foot-dragging position-changing tactics, legal screw-ups and other wasteful shenanigans. The whole record may be found here.
Add comment November 20, 2013 3:56 pm
by Elliott Stonecipher
[Advocate referenced story] I was 8 or 9 when I first made the car trip from Shreveport to Baton Rouge. It was then a long and dangerous drive/ride, and with no I-10 bridge, we crossed the Mississippi on old 190, making it into the capital area by way of the first piece of new I-110. We kids usually pleaded for a detour to and by Capitol Lake. I think most of us from Louisiana’s other state up north were wowed by the Lake’s proximity to “Huey Long’s capitol” (well, his statue was right up front, and he was buried there, right?) and, once open in the early ’60s, the new governor’s mansion. (When I first saw it, I assumed Governor Jimmie Davis needed such a gob of space for his singing gigs, especially given his many Hollywood friends no doubt always there.)
To understate it, Louisiana’s political hook was set in me early. Before too many years whizzed by, my reading strongly suggested the reality of Louisiana politics stomped any warm-fuzzies about much of anything, especially any falderal over lakes or edifices. By my mid-20s, Edwin Edwards was revved, and I was solidly in the reform wing of Louisiana politics, the wing numbered in thousands among a state with a few million. I soon realized how perfect was the exhortation of reformers that Louisiana government “drain its political swamp.” Working for education reform in the capital complex, I came to figure that if one wanted to drain our political swamp, the plug was likely always near, at the center-bottom of Capitol Lake, earlier revered or not.
Now, a handful of decades after my earliest trips, the need to dive-in, find and pull that drain plug somehow (more…)
Add comment November 19, 2013 3:20 pm