Category: Bossier Politics

Bossier Parish Tax Renewals Questioned

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What did we win?by Barry Butler 

I have had several questions about the Bossier Parish tax renewals that are on the ballot for November 8th. The question is, “How is voting for a tax renewal, a tax decrease?”

Because the Bossier Parish Police Jury has raised your taxes, without you being able to vote for or against the taxes twice since you, the voter, approved the rates in 2006. The tax rates you, the voter, approved in 2006 for the Health Unit was .82 mils. The tax rate you, the voter, approved in 2006 for ighway was 1.99 mils.

Tax StressDuring periods of recession, our state constitution allows taxing authorities (Police Juries, city councils, school boards, etc) via Revised Statute 47, Section 1705 to raise your tax rates to Read more

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Right Sizing Government  –  Act III, Scene One [Bossier]

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Welcome!
Welcome!

by Barry Butler

What do governments do when they have TOO MUCH money?  Hard to believe, but some parts of governments have excess funds.  It would be nice to know that our elected folks would move the excess funds to areas that need funds or even better reduce tax rates, but, no that’s not the case.  When government has too much money, they spend it on themselves.

You see, the Bossier Parish Library system has too much money so they are planning to build, for themselves, a new $20 Million Administration Complex.  (Bossier Parish Police Jury Minutes, February 3, 2016, Read more

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QUESTIONS TO BE ANSWERED FOR VOTERS BEFORE PORT TAX RENEWAL VOTE ON 9 APRIL

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015Here is a list of questions that the officials of the Port of Caddo Bossier should answer for voters before the upcoming tax renewals. The Port spends big bucks with a local ad agency for public relations, but Executive Director Eric England is tightlipped when asked “hard questions” about the internal operations of the Port, much less the upcoming tax renewal. This list was sent to England with a request that he answer the same; he has failed to respond to this email.

Executive Director Eric England
Director Eric England
  1. The 2.5 mil tax has generated over $80 million dollars in 21 years. How has this money been spent and why does the tax need to be renewed?
  2. The initial tax was approved in 1993 to 25 years—it expires in 2018. Why are you seeking a renewal now?
  3. There was a presidential primary on Saturday—March 5—for Read more
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Our Hearts are Heavy, But Questions to Government & Developers Remain

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KTBS supplied photo
KTBS file photo

by Marion Marks

This morning KTBS posted a follow up on the flooding in residential areas. The tragedy becomes even more apparent to the public that this broken record of flooding was all not necessary had the governing entities recognized the flood plain should never have been so recklessly developed.

Bossier engineer Butch Ford will certainly explain these facts soon, as he did at another recent meeting.  Yes, the developers made a boatload of money taking the low-lying areas, with flat lots along a picturesque view, and pouring slabs and selling homes when the water was not covering the area. But the knowledgable governing entities have known for years that this area was prone to flood.

Directly from Bossier warning!
Directly from Bossier warning!

On the Bossier City website, this file and maps seem to clearly indicate the parish knowledge and warning of the flood plain and the threat to Read more

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The Trump-Sanders Rage Has Roots With Caddo Commission –– Commissioner Linn Questioned

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believeby Marion Marks

You have to believe in something, everybody does, and even atheists have a belief in their unbelief. Yet rage and anger has a new voice in both national political parties against those who have abused the system and citizens. Too many incumbents and players who believe the political process is a personal playground or piggybank draw enough fire to quench the anger of voters who feel tarring and feathering would be a good start.

money-manners-morals-integrityVoters have such a frail moral vision that when an elected official follows a righteous path that benefits the public, corrects wrongs and bases decisions on a belief that justice can be accomplished, the official generally ends up being ridiculed and required to prove himself guiltless. It’s almost as if voters expect officials to sell out to porn vendors, massage parlors and gambling interests.

When a commissioner, namely the current Caddo Commission President, Matthew Linn, questions past actions that have sold out citizen interests, the first question is to demand that his Read more

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GET READY FOR PR BLITZ BY PORT FOR APRIL 9 TAX RENEWAL

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015Yep, its that time again—for Caddo (and for a change Bossier) voters to have another special election’ for a tax renewal. Not that there are not enough special elections in what is almost a home grown Louisiana sport— tax elections on dates that do not coincide with regular elections. This time the vote is to renew a 2.5 millage for the Caddo Bossier Port on April 9th.

On April 3, 1993, the voters of Caddo and Bossier Parishes approved a special tax of 2.5 mills to be levied on the property subject to taxation in the Port Area, consisting of Caddo and bossier Parishes for a period of twenty -five (25) years, commencing with the year 1993. The purpose of the tax was for site acquisition and for constructing, acquiring, improving and equipping docks and wharves, transfer and storage facilities, commercial and industrial facilities and other port, transportation and infrastructure facilities and improvements with the Port. The revenue from this tax has increased from $2 million in 1995 to over $6 million in 2014. In 21 years over $80 million has been generated by this assessment.

port of shreveport bossier
port of shreveport bossier

The Port has approximately 700 acres of it’s 2300 hundred acres owned left for development; only 145 of these are contiguous which limits Read more

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Has Matthew Linn Cut Off His Limb?

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sawing_limbby Marion Marks

Matthew Linn has raised more issues in his first month as President of the Caddo Commission than any commissioner in modern memory. One of three possible results will probably be the end product of issues raised.
#1 – An embarrassed Linn will reverse course, perhaps even step down, because his actions were based on erroneous interpretations of the law.
#2 – The Caddo Commission will have to reverse course because illegal actions have been “business as usual,” because they have broken or they ignored the law and have illegally conducted business in this manner for years. Or,
#3 – NLCOG, as well as other bodies, have ignored or failed to recognize the law as Linn and other attorneys are now interpreting it, and their prior actions will be under the microscope for years to come. Failure Counts

Linn has taken the position that commissioners have delegated the parish’s obligation far too much to the parish administrator, Dr. Woody Wilson, and that Read more

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BOSSIER/WEBSTER JUDGE JEFF COX SETS SIGHTS ON SECOND CIRCUIT SEAT

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015Bossier Webster Judge Jeff Cox has always been a pace setter when he was in private practice and after he donned a black robe, so its no surprise that he has been openly campaigning for a seat on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals since last fall; the election is November 8 of this year. What is somewhat of a surprise is that Cox is not running for an open seat; he is challenging Judge Jay Caraway who was first elected to the Second Circuit in 1996. (Caraway was unopposed for re-election in 2006.)

Bossier Webster Judge Jeff Cox
Bossier Webster Judge Jeff Cox

Actually there is a local precedent that Cox is attempting to duplicate,—that being former Caddo Judge Scott Crichton who launched an aggressive campaign last year for the Louisiana Supreme Court seat held by then Justice Jeff Victory. Ultimately Victory decided to retire and not seek re-election; most observers believe Crichton would have been successful in a contested election. Crichton’s Supreme Court push in 2015, which actually started in 2014, certainly provides a road map for Cox. Read more

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Q: Why Did The Chicken Cross the Road and…

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Why Build Homes on the Water Side of Levees??

John Settle-Opinion-May 2015The first inquiry is an age-old question that generally leads to a joke; the second is a not a trick question but the answer is a “joke” in and of itself. For some unexplained reason, the local state and national media has focused on the relatively small number (25 at most??) expensive houses that have been flooded in two subdivisions—one on each side of the Red River—and the impact of the unprecedented flood waters on these abodes and the owners of now greatly devalued properties. Scant attention has been given to the question of why build on the water side of the levee to begin with—and why not recognize the flood risk on the front end before purchase and construction versus on the back end after the devastating Read more

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The Battle to Bring 3132 Extension Back to Life

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3132 loop-de-loop
3132: The “REAL” Loop!

by Elliott Stonecipher

Public meetings about the Hwy. 3132 Extension were held yesterday, one at lunchtime in Southwest Shreveport, and one at dinnertime at LSU-S.  An informal survey of those who attended confirms that confusion was yet again the order of the day. 

Such is the lifeblood, we participants have certainly been taught, of the arcane, stealthy and anything-but-transparent world of highway “planning” in our neck of the woods.

(Go to this article’s footnote * for directions to additional facts and history.)

Elliott_StonecipherThese gatherings were the work of our Northwest Louisiana Council of Governments (NLCOG), with an assist from and by the Louisiana Department of Transportation & Development (LA DOTD). 

Building a Louisiana highway is one of the most awfully political, inscrutable and insanely expensive – in all ways – processes known to man, woman or child.  Attending one of these “public meetings” is a taste of the mayhem.  First escorted into a darkened-room for a video presentation Read more

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