Category: Planning-MPC

WILLIE BRADFORD WELL POSITIONED TO PROVIDE PROGRESSIVE LEADERSHIP TO SHREVEPORT CITY COUNCIL

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John Settle-Opinion-May 2015Last month the Shreveport City Council elected Willie Bradford to be its Chairman for 2016; this vote could very well be the most definitive action that this council will take in its 4 year term, which began in December 2015. James Flurry, Bradford’s closest ally on the Council, was elected Vice Chairman; Bradford and Flurry assumed their positions at this week’s Council meetings.

Who will meet challenge?
Who will meet the challenge?

Four members of the current Council are first timers—Bradford. Flurry, Jerald Bowman and Lynch; all but Flurry are black. The incumbents– Everson, Oliver Jenkins, and Mike Corbin– are white and they are term-limited. This group will undoubtedly be the last majority white Council for the City in the foreseeable future.

Lynch was probably the best known of the “newbies”, having previously served on the Read more

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Demand Record Compliance for the Public’s Business

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FloodgatesPandorasboxCanofworms-eMail Recordsby Marion Marks

I believe the “Can of Worms” the Hillary Clinton email server revelation exposed regarding use of non-official email accounts for State Department business emails must be addressed by the local media as it affects our local entities and business correspondence failures. Locally, in my opinion, we have done a very poor job of addressing what the law requires public officials to do.

We have a great starting point, and I believe we must have formal discussion of this topic. Here is a great article for awareness of issues, for those who may not understand the implications of public records.

emails going laptopMost government and board emails I receive from local public officials or entities regarding government business will have one or more parties who private email address is used. In recent public records requests [PRR], and over the last year on too many occasions, I was a party to PRR filings where the board members, government agency representatives Read more

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MPC Staff: the Tarnished Image for Us

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Tarnished Imagesby Marion Marks

Louisiana, Caddo Parish and Shreveport can only have an image as good as the service public officials and those who work in government permit. We elect public officials to represent us, enforce our laws and carry out programs funded by our monies, yet the consensus of the public is that we rate services provided at near record lows. Congress has an approval rating of well below 20%, but, I wonder how low we rate our local entities?

MPC Staff Questions CycleMy recent interaction with the Shreveport Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC) staff leads me to believe that a chief reason our approval rating for government service are so very low is that we cannot hold staff members accountable for poor and ineffective services provided. Additionally, citizens are required to jump Read more

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Where the Caddo Sidewalk Stops…

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Why a Run-Away School Administration and
Board
Need to be Told “NO!”

reinvest-in-caddo-january-2015-1-638by Marion Marks

Creating a great marketing title for a tax election is as critical a component for gaining support as anything, and Caddo Parish officials have an excellent record for constructively wording tax plans to obtain voter approval. Reinvest in Caddo, the name chosen by the Caddo Parish School Board(CPSB) for the bond election on the May 2nd ballot appears, on the surface, to be no more than a renewal of existing taxes. However the facts, chemistry and larger picture for Caddo is far more sinister as school leadership has crafted behind the scenes a long-range plan citizens must struggle to comprehend. The leadership of both the CPSB and the administration have resisted giving citizens a clear picture of the ramifications of their plans.

Empty Glass
Scenario…

The Caddo School School Administration(CPSA) and the CPSB have constructed scenarios the culminate in the current plan, and since Superintendent Goree was approved to take control from failed superintendent Gerald Dawkins in 2014 back-room maneuvers have only heated up. Currently CPSB is represented Read more

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Is Ignorance Bliss in Shreveport?

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
LFL with bench to read!

by Marion Marks

Little Free Libraries (LFL) are a “Hot Button” topic on the agenda of the Shreveport City Council meeting Tuesday (3 pm, 505 Travis Street). The City Council, led by Jeff Everson, hopes to close a chapter of community uproar that the national media attention brought fire on the Metropolitan Planning Commission’s (MPC) violation citation (CASE # ZVC1400245 zoned: R-1H) against Frederick and Teresa Edgerton for operating a LFL. Unfortunately, Resolution 19 in current form does not solve the problem. Rather, it raises numerous questions, delays a lasting decision, and provides the possibility that LFLs could be banned in the future.

Tom Pace
Tom Pace

To Councilman Everson’s credit, when he learned of the MPC cease and desist letter to the Edgertons, he began working immediately to assist his constituents and resolve the existing problem. Unfortunately, it appears his work, based on the information that I believe was presented by the MPC to the general public, may fall short of resolving the real issues. In his interview on The Talk of the Town with Tom Page, Everson reiterates Read more

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Shreveport MPC/Staff Choke on Challenge

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by Marion MarksLittle Free Library

Following the Little Free Library issue in Shreveport has been a folly for social media gurus as the chain of bumbles by the MPC staff has only been heightened when a non-threat appeared from copy-cat Anonymous spoofs along with law-enforcement tracking of the culprits.

LFL Demo Units
Sample LFL Units

The Little Free Library (LFL) concept* is a well-established institution nationwide base on the concept that libraries, book-sharing and reading are a basis for educating the public, providing cheap recreational materials and challenging the system of who controls public access and public areas. Little Free Libraries can be found generally through social media, but Google searches also take searchers to potential local venues, where available.

The Shreveport LFL first appeared in social media in February, 2013, however the origins may predate the FaceBook group page. The founders appear to be based around librarians and bibliophiles who appreciate reading, sharing books Read more

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Pollyanna Provenza’s Mayoral Bid – Another Puppet Candidate Like Ollie Tyler?

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Shreveport Attorney John Settle
Opinion–John Settle

Victoria Provenza has entered the mayor’s race playing the role of the politically naive, poverty stricken candidate that will make it all better to live in Shreveport. Despite her assertion that she was a big time super-fund site manager and a very successful business woman out West, she has returned virtually penniless (as she claims) to save her home town. Pollyanna Provenza does not have a job (she is on leave of absence from her part time substitute teaching job) nor does she own a home, – – and reportedly her cell phone still has a Colorado area code.

Victoria ProvenzaPollyanna is a campaigning as an independent; in Colorado she was a big time Republican – – being elected as a state delegate. Now she claims that “political parties and partisanship is an impediment to progress”. Her website says she is running for mayor to lend her “unique skill set and experience to the community through public service.” Evidently Pollyanna wants to start on top; to date she has not involved herself in any Shreveport community services or programs – – but she is the reigning Krewe of Highland Mardi Gras Queen.

Despite never having run for an elected political office nor served in a public Read more

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Hwy. 3132 Extension Stage 1 Study Kick-off

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Go Find it...
Project Initiation

by Elliott Stonecipher

For the next eighteen months or so, those who care about the LA Hwy. 3132 Extension to the Port of Caddo-Bossier will want to focus on the conduct and completion of the project’s Stage 1 Feasibility Study.  Its “kick-off,” or Project Initiation, meeting was held Monday, August 18, 2014.

Regardless that the meeting was closed to the public and news media, one of the participating agencies – the Port of Caddo-Bossier, a body critical to successful completion of the Extension – prepared a transcription of the action.  In response to our Coalition’s Public Records Request, that document was made available to us, and may be read here.  An additional “Meeting Report” from and by the consulting engineer for the project, BKI, Inc., was also produced.

From Humble BeginningsAfter studying these documents and talking with Port Read more

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Justifying Outrage at City’s Elected Officials

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by Willie Bradford
by Willie Bradford

I attended Shreveport City Council Meeting on Tuesday to voice my outrage and disappointment at the public hearing that was being held on the Calvin Grigsby dispute. Others also came to express their outraged and disappointment.  The anger and outrage were because 3 years after the voters approved a 170 million dollars Bond Proposal for capital improvements, most have not been completed. And some not even started. The reason; according to Mayor Glover is because there’s not a financial adviser in place to sell the remaining 94 million dollars in Bonds.

Of the 12 citizens that who spoke, 10 spoke (African Americans) in favor of the Council reinstating Grigsby as the city’s  financial advisor so that the work on the other major projects could resume. They dismissed the ongoing dispute as to whether Grigsby overbilled the city for previous services as being unmerited.

"... vetted..."
Grigsby unelected power?

I don’t ever remember a public hearing being held on who will be the financial adviser for this City. And I’ve never knew that a financial advisor could stop voter approved capital improvements.

I am absolutely perplexed. Perplexed because in 2010 the voters of Read more

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Part IV: Fix Was In for Larkin at June Council Meeting

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by Elliott Stonecipher
[This is the fourth article in this series.  Previous articles were published July 28, 2014 which may be read here;  July 30, 2014, here; and, August 6, 2014 here.]

Filing-DeadlineThe legal deadline for response is days past, and a new Public Records Request by the Finish 3132 Coalition has provided additional detail about the run-up to the Shreveport City Council subject vote on June 10th.  Among other notable facts, this new Request confirms yet another meeting of front-line players just days before the Council met and the votes were cast.

The Council voted 5-2 to allow Bossier City Councilman and real estate developer Tim Larkin to build houses in the path of the proposed LA Hwy. 3132 Extension to the Port of Caddo-Bossier.

Shreveport sunshine_DEMAND(sm)The original Public Records Request by the Coalition in this matter was made of city government, broadly, while this most recent one was made Read more

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