Shreveport City Marshal “Diamond” Charlie Caldwell seems to be living up to his nickname with his latest foray into educational travel for the marshal and deputy marshals within the Shreveport City Marshal’s office. Caldwell, as reported by Gerry May of KTBS, took six deputies to Destin, Florida earlier this month and spent what amounted to a per diem of $879.60*. Or, for all seven members of the City Marshal’s office a cost of $4,398 per person for the educational venture.
And just what did this trip give the deputies at taxpayer expense? How about two-bedroom gulf-front condominiums at $2,900 each per week or three-bedroom condominiums for $3,700 each per week. Staying on the gulf is not cheap, and Diamond Charlie went FIRST CLASS!
And the cost of food, tax-payer money supported each deputy to the amount of $600 for the week. But Diamond Charlie ran a food tab allotment of $950. As far a the Marshal indicated, the members of his staff rotate participation in this “training exercise.”
Last summer, Diamond Charlie told us he was taking the best class the office could buy, while getting an MBA from Harvard for himself. However, he ran back to Shreveport before he could complete the classes. This departure from Boston in the middle of classes certainly should be explained. And, if the program was not completed, should not the office be reimbursed for expenses? Somehow the City Marshal’s office is in the middle of so many storms, the public should have a better accounting of the money that is expended by Diamond Charlie.
We have questions for Diamond Charlie:
- If there are 30 marshals, please let us know which ones have participated in this each year’s programs along with new credentials.
- Please send the credentials your deputies attained at these training exercises since you took office along with the cost factors for each.
- Please account for money spent on automobiles for the marshal’s office and explain where all the vehicles are that have been purchased. (According to Diamond Charlie each member of his office has at least one vehicle to drive and take home.)
The 2014 City Marshal election could not come sooner for Shreveport voters. Taxpayers are fed up with the arrogant use of public funds for trips, vehicles and personal expenses by Diamond Charlie Caldwell.
*Total cost of $30,786.10 reported for five days of educational programs.