Here Are the Proposed Public Safety Bond Issue Projects
In the last bond proposal election, which totaled $236 million in December 2021 during the Perkins administration, only one proposal out of five passed. That was for public safety, including fire and police.
On August 3rd, Shreveport Mayor Tom Arceneaux announced he's putting together a 19-member committee to study the needs of a new General Obligation Bond issue for capital improvements for Shreveport.
The committee is made up of 19 citizens from a broad range of backgrounds. Each of the seven city council members appointed two, with the mayor appointing five members.
On Wednesday Shreveport Police Chief Wayne Smith and Shreveport Fire Chief Clarence Reese Jr presented their proposals for the upcoming bond election. Here's a look at their 'wish lists.'
PROPOSED PUBLIC SAFETY BOND ISSUE PROJECTS
Police and Fire Academy Renovations- $15,000,000
The Academy is approximately fifty years old. The building badly needs refurbishing and its major mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems replaced or updated. It also needs an expanded indoor and outdoor physical training area, new restrooms and locker rooms to accommodate female recruits and officers, as well as renovated classrooms able to accommodate the newest virtual reality-based training programs. The Academy also needs a full-service generator. Although some funding was included in the 2021 Public Safety bond issue for auditorium renovation and replacement of the firing range, the remainder of the Academy is barely functional in its current state and is a deterrent to recruitment.
Police Substations- $5,000,000
$4.5 million for three Police substations was included in the 2021 bond issue. However, it has become clear that these funds will not even cover the cost of the first two substations (on North Market and on Foremost Drive, just off Monkhouse Drive). A third substation needs to be sited and built in southeast Shreveport. Building these substations will provide a place for Patrol officers assigned to these districts to headquarter, which reduces the size requirements (and thus, the cost) of the Police HQ building approved in the 2021 bond issue.
Fire Station Renovations- $3,000,000
The city has 22 fire stations. Many of them are in need of renovations due to their age. Stations 5 (East Stoner), 6 (David Raines), 7 (Wilkinson) and 19 (Ellerbe Road) will be the first priorities. Others will be added if funding allows.
3 New Fire Stations- $11,000,000
This would replace Station 11 on Youree Drive near Albany, Station 3 on East 70th between Bayou Pierre and Youree Drive and Station 16 on Hollywood Avenue just west of Regional Airport. Land acquisition will be needed for Stations 3 and 11. Land (almost two acres) is readily available next to Station 3. Station 11’s location and site footprint will depend on the availability of adjacent properties.
There are still a couple of opportunities for you to express your thoughts on the wants and needs of the city. There are two more community meetings scheduled.
October 4th, Wednesday 6PM
Jackson Building Auditorium
October 5, Thursday 6PM
Louisiana State University