Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bossier Council will name Knight replacement next Tuesday

The Bossier City Council will decide on a replacement for James “Chubby” Knight at their meeting next Tuesday. Knight’s resignation will be effective tomorrow.
The people who have applied for the District 5 position are:
Dr. James Rogers
Larry Hanissee
Marsha McAllister
Mike Halphen
Cortez Bridges
Eliot Knowles
Tommy Harvey
Perry Smith
Dr. Rogers served on the council and chose not to run for re-election. If chosen, he would only serve until the fall elections.
Larry Hanisee lost to Knight in the race for the seat in 2009. He has said that he intends to run in the fall.
Mike Halphen, former police chief, said that he was interested in public service when he left the police job.
Tommy Harvey and Marsha McAllister have also indicated that they will run in the fall.
My prediction is Dr. Rogers, for two reasons. First of all, he has experience on the council, second, he has no desire to run in the fall. If not Rogers, then Hannissee because he was runner up and also has served on the council.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Times endorses Richard for City Marshal Post

The Times this morning endorsed Carl Richard for Bossier City Marshal.
"Richard is most focused on the city marshal's primary mission. And with a combined 19 years as a deputy city marshal — five in Bossier City followed by 14 in Shreveport, he would require little on-the-job training."
They go on to say "He also wants to Bossier City's and Shreveport's personnel commissioned so they occasionally can team up on a warrants roundup or the like."
Read the entire endorsement here.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Republican Women Q & A session for City Marshal candidates

NWLTPA has videos up from the Republican Women of Bossier's meeting Tuesday night.  The candidates for marshal all gave a three minute presentation and then answered questions that were submitted by the members.
There are seven videos.  I was particularly interested in the Q & A part and worked on compiling a short video of some excerpts.  Unfortunately, the gods of videoland weren't smiling on me and I kept having glitches.  You can go to the NWLTPA site on YouTube and watch them in their entirety.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Lots of money in play in Bossier Marshal's race

Lynn Austin is out in front in the money race for the Bossier City Marshal’s office, having collected donations of $119,900 to date. That’s more than twice as much as his opponents combined.
Sam Wyatt has reported donations of $23,785 and Carl Richard $21,050. In addition, Austin loaned his campaign $50,000 at the beginning of the race, meaning that he has had $169,900 to work with.
There is nothing at all wrong or unethical in this. That’s just a lot of money in play for a city marshal’s race.
Compare this to the Shreveport City Marshal’s race in 2008 where both candidates (Charlie Caldwell and Mike Van Sant) raised a total of $110,285, less than Lynn Austin’s contributions alone. Caldwell, the winner, raised $40,060 and Van Sant $70,225.
From what I’m hearing, the race is much closer than the dollars would indicate. We’ll know next week.
You can check out the donations and expenditures for each candidate for yourself.
Lynn Austin
Sam Wyatt
Carl Richard

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Bellaire Elementary needs your help

An Amazing Story

I often link to Andy, but I seldom just steal anything right off the pages of Andy's Place and put it on My Bossier.  This is an exception.
An Amazing Story

In 1972, Joe Miller was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Tulsa Junior College .

On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Joe approached it very carefully. He got down on one knee, inspected the elephant’s foot, and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Joe worked the wood out with his knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot.

The elephant turned to Joe, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Joe stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled.

Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away. Joe never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.

Thirty years later, Joe was walking through the Tulsa Zoo with his family. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Joe and his family were standing. The large bull elephant stared at Joe, lifted its front foot off the ground, and then put it down. The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man.

Remembering the encounter in 1972, Joe could not help wondering if this was the same elephant... Joe summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing, and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Joe's legs and slammed him against the railing killing him instantly.

Probably wasn't the same elephant.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Local Politics Update

Marty Carlson had a column in The Press-Tribune on Friday discussing the School Board and the anticipated need for a new bond issue.
  • “As important as it is to maintain and increase the success of our local school system, it is equally important that the voting public understands – and has input – into school board planning for the future. Otherwise the BPSB may find this isn’t the same public it faced in the 2004 proposal.”
Read the article, it is spot on.

Jane Smith made her formal announcement for the Senate District 37 seat currently held by Buddy Shaw. No one else has formally announced yet.

The Bossier City Marshal’s race is winding up its last two weeks with the candidates making an appearance before the Republican Women of Bossier tomorrow evening.
Rex Moncrief at Conservative Drink gave his observations here. In case you missed the videos of their appearance at the South Bossier Assembly that were offered by the Northwest Louisiana Tea Party Alliance, here they are.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Condolences to Mayor and Mrs. Walker

Our sincerest sympathy goes out to Mayor Lo Walker and Mrs. Walker on the death of their son today.  William Lance Walker was 39 years old.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Comment Moderation

I am instituting comment moderation on the blog, this means that I will have to read and approve any comments that are left before they go up.
I am doing this because a lot of unnecessary comments, some bordering on slander, some silly and some just outrageous, have been left lately.
You will still be able to fully express your view, support your candidates, and discuss your agreement/disagreement with any candidate or their platform.  What you won't be able to do is make accusatory remarks that can't be substantiated.
Let's see if it improves the level of our discussions.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Saint Patricks Day

Instead of the usual shamrock or leprechaun, I thought on this St. Patrick’s day it would be to have something that really reflects Ireland.
Thirty-four million Americans claim Irish ancestors, mine were from Ulster in Northern Ireland.
The top video is the Irish Guard in parade before the Queen on St Patrick’s Day.
But they don’t just march around in those impressive uniforms, they are after all a military force.
In the bottom photo in the 1st Battalion Irish Guards at Aldershot leaving the Church after receiving a blessing of safety as they left for Iraq in 2007.

Videos of City Marshal Candidates speeches at South Bossier Assembly online

The Northwest Louisiana Tea Party Alliance has videos of the speeches of Lynn Austin, Carl Richard and Sammy Wyatt at the South Bossier meeting last night.
Seems to me that all three gave good presentations.
Watch the Videos

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

South Bossier Citizens meeting tonight

The South Bossier Citizens Assembly will host the three candidates for Bossier City Marshal tonight at the Shady Grove Recreation Center on Wayne Avenue, across from the library.
The meeting begins at 5:30 PM and after each candidate gives a presentation, they will be available to meet with citizens and discuss their views.
Directions: from Barksdale Boulevard go down Shady Grove Drive and turn left on Wayne Avenue.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Dr. John in Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Dr. John will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame tonight, along with Darlene Love, Tom Waits, Neil Diamond and Alice Cooper.
Leon Russell will receive the Award for Recording Excellence.
The Hall of Fame website says “Dr. John belongs to a prestigious lineage of New Orleans keyboard greats that includes such names as Professor Longhair, Huey “Piano” Smith and Fats Domino. His name has become synonymous with the city in which he was born. Dr. John’s music is stamped with the rhythms and traditions of the Crescent City, and he has spent a career that now spans more than half a century championing its music.”

Bossier High School 4-A Basketball Champions

Congratulations to the Bossier Bearkats on winning the 4-A State Championship yesterday.
The Bearkats beat Peabody 59-48.


Bossier Press Tribune

Shreveport Times

WWL TV (New Orleans)

KALB (Alexandria)

The News-Star (Monroe)

WLOX (Biloxi, Gulfport, Pascagoula)

The News Star (Monroe)

USA Today

WXVT (Greenville, Ms)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Earthquake and Tsunami

YouTube has a lot of videos of the Earthquake and resulting Tsunami in Japan. I don’t usually talk too much about national or international news, because there are already plenty of people doing that.
This is such a major event that it deserves attention.
At And So it Goes in Shreveport, Pat tells us that the earthquake shifted the planet on its axis by four inches. Read her post Perspective.
These videos are from Russia Today and are pretty dramatic.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

City council to address street maintenance questions

David Jones
The Times has a good article this morning about streets in Bossier City, and the situation being faced by some residents who have discovered that their street is their expense.
Streets in subdivisions, if they are not dedicated to the city, are the responsibility of homeowners.
In practical terms, this means that if your street needs repairs or paving, guess who has to pay for it? Not the city.
Very few people, when buying a house, would even think to check to see if the streets were dedicated. It’s just not on people’s radar.
Bossier City Council President David Jones said "I know by the letter of the law we're supposed to tell them tough luck, but I don't know if that's the right answer on this," he told the council.
Jones proposes that no more private streets be built in the city, and agreed with Councilman Scott Irwin that the city conduct a study to see how many private streets exist in the city limits and how the city can address the problems.
Hopefully, there won’t be too many and the city can move to help the homeowners.
Read the Article in The Times

Sunshine Week

Next week (March 13 thru 19) is Sunshine Week.
Sunshine Week is a national initiative to promote a dialogue about the importance of open government and freedom of information. Participants include news media, civic groups, libraries, nonprofits, schools and others interested in the public's right to know.
Sunshine Week as a national effort is spearheaded by the American Society of News Editors. The key funder has been the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, with significant support from ASNE Foundation. In 2011, The Gridiron Club and Foundation contributed $10,000.
Thanks to Greg Aymond at Central La Politics for bringing this to our attention.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Gaming Board member Jerry Juneau resigns over involvement with Lynn Austin fundraiser

KTBS reported tonight that Jerry Juneau has resigned his position as a member of the State Gaming Board.
The resignation is related to a fundraiser that was held for Lynn Austin, candidate for Bossier City Marshal. The Northwest Louisiana Tea Party Alliance published a story on their website about the event, including a copy of an invitation from the Austin campaign.
The fundraiser was held in February at Juneau’s place of business, City Tele-Coin. The invitation from the Austin campaign showed the location of the event to be "City Tele-Coin – Jerry Juneau".
Members of the Gaming Board are forbidden to engage in any political campaign in any way, or even to attempt to influence votes for any candidate.
Juneau told Channel 3 that he did not attend the fundraiser.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Roemer in Iowa

If you think Buddy Roemer is not serious about a presidential run, you’d better think again.
At the first event of its kind in the 2012 race with multiple potential candidates sharing the same stage, Roemer appeared at the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition spring kick-off event yesterday in Waukee, Iowa, along with Herman Cain, Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty and Newt Gingrich.
The Washington Post published an article about the gathering, and had this to say about Roemer’s appearance:
   "And the winner is: hard to say, though Buddy Roemer (who seemed to speak twice as long as anyone else and somehow already looked exasperated by all of this campaigning) managed to not only articulate his views on the corrupting influence of money in politics, but establish his policy for campaign contributions (capping them at one hundred dollars and expecting no money from PACs)."
The Faith and Freedom Coalition is headed nationally by "social conservative" Ralph Reed, who said ""If we get the culture right, the economy will be right eventually."
It’s kind of hard to see Roemer fitting himself with Ralph Reed, but as they say, politics makes for strange bedfellows.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Zagone, McWilliams were both good appointments

The blog post I put up about Brad Zagone being appointed fire chief was hijacked by commenters talking about the Masons.  That's okay, I let the comments flow pretty freely, and sometimes a blog ends up being about something entirely different than the subject that was posted.
In this case I want to clarify what I think.
I believe Mayor Walker made good appointments both in the police department with Shane McWilliams and in the Fire Department with Zagone.
Both are younger men and from what I can tell, very dedicated to their professsion.  I don't think that they qualify as part of a 'good old boys' network.
Kudos to Mayor Walker on both of these key appointments.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Bossier City Marshal's race getting a lot of attention

The race for Bossier City Marshal is getting a lot of internet and media attention, and that will only intensify in the next four weeks.
The Times has an article on the Opinion Page this morning, and the Northwest Louisiana Tea Party Alliance has been into it in depth, featuring interviews with the candidates and examinations of their financial disclosures.
Two Tea Party blogs also discuss the race.

Will marshal's office continue fight against online predators?

The local man of mystery
Two Wyatts and a Richard
The Austin Files

The Interviews

Interview with Carl Richard

Interview with Sammy Wyatt (Part 1)

Interview with Sammy Wyatt (Part 2)

Interview with Lynn Austin

Friday, March 4, 2011

My Bossier Weekly Roundup: The Vlog

Video blogging, or vlogging, has become pretty popular in some quarters. While I have no desire to change the format of My Bossier, I thought it might be good to do a weekly update vlog, discussing the blog posts and events of the week.
This is my first effort; we’ll try it for a couple of weeks and see how it goes. Please give me your honest opinion – should I keep it up or not?

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Ryal Siem to announce Tax Assessor bid

My name is Ryal Siem and on March 3, 2011 I will be formally announcing my
candidacy for the Bossier Parish Tax Assessor.
I am a lifelong resident of Bossier Parish having attended Bossier Parish Schools in Haughton and Bossier City. I graduated from Airline High School in 1979. I then attended LSU-Shreveport where I earned an Associate of Arts Degree in Criminal Justice and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in General Studies.
My wife, Terri Hamous Siem, and I have been married for over 28 years. My wife works for the Bossier Parish School System and teaches 5th grade at Benton Elementary. We have two children who are both married. Our children and their spouses live in Bossier Parish.
This June, I will have 30 years of service with General Motors. Currently I am a
Production Superintendent. However, I have held many leadership positions and several special assignments within the organization. I have been recognized by GM management for my integrity, trust, perseverance and composure under stress. I have multi-functional experience in Employee Relations, Human Resources and Manufacturing. I have become very accomplished at planning, budgeting and conflict resolution. I have managed groups of employees from as small as five to as large as several hundred. I have maintained a very strong rapport with both GM leadership as well as our workforce. I have demonstrated professional agility and the ability to lead
The Parish Tax Assessor’s primary responsibility is to ensure the citizens of Bossier Parish, that all property is assessed in a fair and equitable manner. If elected Tax Assessor I assure you that all assessments will be fair and equitable.
I have the skill and leadership that is required to perform the duties of the Tax Assessor.
I also have the integrity, the trust and character that the citizens of Bossier Parish are looking for.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Mayor Walker appoints Zagone Fire Chief

Bossier City Mayor Lorenz "Lo" Walker today announced his appointment of Brad Zagone to the position of Bossier City Fire Chief. Mayor Walker made his announcement during a news conference this morning at Bossier City Hall.
Chief Zagone, 38, is a veteran of the Bossier City Fire Department of more than 16 years. He joined the department and got his start on the fire line in August of 1994 and has most recently served as a Fire Prevention Officer with the BCFD's Fire Prevention Bureau at the rank of Captain. In that capacity Chief Zagone's duties included fire investigating, fire inspections and fire safety public education. He is also a certified member of the BCFD Bomb Squad. Chief Zagone holds a number of certifications including Emergency Medical Technician-Paramedic, Fire Inspector I and II, Fire Fighter I and II, Fire Service Instructor I as well as a number of fire and explosives investigation specialties.
During his career with BCFD Chief Zagone has received numerous awards and citations including Administrative Fire Officer of the Year, Academic Achievement Award, Excellence Service Award, Meritorious Unit Citation Award, Bomb Technician Award, LSU AgCenter Certificate of Service Award and Unit Citation Award.
Chief Zagone is a 1990 graduate of Airline High School and earned an Associate of Applied Science in Business Administration degree in 2007 from Bossier Parish Community College.
Chief Zagone replaces Sammy Halphen who retired at the end of 2010 and becomes the Bossier City Fire Department's seventh  Fire Chief. His appointment is effective today, March 1, 2011 and is contingent on his subsequent passing of the Fire Chief Civil Service test which will be administered on March 29, 2011.

Whittington is a wild card in Bossier Sheriff's race

Julian Whittington, former Chief Criminal Deputy with the Bossier Parish Sheriff's Department, resigned last month.  Speculation was rampant that he would run for sheriff against incumbent Larry Deen.
Former Deputy Sheriff Mike McConnell has already thrown his hat into the ring. 
We have been able to confirm from a couple of very reliable sources that Whittington is going to run. 
Deju Vu all over again?
The question that is being asked is whether or not a former deputy can unseat a powerful sitting sheriff.
Ask Larry Deen.
In 1987 he took 62% of the vote against his former boss, Vol Dooley.
In addition, I hear that Whittington has some very influential support lining up in his corner.
Don't misunderstand, Larry Deen still has a lot of very solid support, but he is not invincible.
This promises to be a very interesting election year.