Has This Shreveport State Senator Changed His Mind on the Bond Package?
State Senator Greg Tarver weighs in on the upcoming bond election and his thoughts on the chances that he'll seek the city's highest office in 2022.
Is the Bond Vote a Referendum on Mayor Perkins?
In a recent KEEL interview, Tarver said that the vote on the five part, $242 million bond "is a referendum on (Mayor Adrian) Perkins." But does the Senator still feel that way?
"I don't know if it's a referendum, but it will say a lot about the (Perkins) administration. Number one, I don't think the bond package is needed for Shreveport, right now."
Tarver explains that the city currently has over $100 million in reserve, with possibly another $50 million in federal funds coming next year, the borrowing - and the subsequent property tax hike - is unnecessary. "I don't see why they want to tax the people when we're trying to build up the economy of Shreveport."
Tarver Explains His No Vote
Tarver also stands by his opposition to all five parts of the package, including money for both city police and fire departments. "They're getting $48 million from the federal government next year they can use for police and fire," he says, reiterating that he is a no vote down the line. "I've always supported...police and fire, but building a building is not going to make you safer at home. we need more policemen on the street. A building...is not going to keep people from shooting. You've got to put more policemen on the streets and give them better pay."
Will He Run for Mayor Next Year?
When asked about the possibility of entering next year's race for mayor, the Senator defers. "All that money that's in Baton Rouge right now, coming from the federal government, I'm going to try to get some of that money for north Louisiana. I'm going to be a good senator right now."
But, he also leaves the door open for a run. When asked, does Shreveport need a new mayor, Tarver answers without hesitation. "Yes."