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Dog park and the Shreveport City Charter - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Dog park and the Shreveport City Charter

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SHREVEPORT, La. -

In just over a week, we could learn the future of Shreveport's proposed dog park. That's when the Shreveport Dog Park Alliance will square off against Mayor Cedric Glover in court. At issue is the mayor's refusal to accept money from the Red River Waterway Commission to pay for the park, despite a veto over-ride by the city council. Unlike the U.S. Constitution, the Shreveport City Charter doesn't specifically say that when a veto is over-ridden, it becomes law. So is it time to take another look at the city's charter, that's been in place since 1978. Shreveport City Council Chairman Michael Corbin believes the charter is clear and that if the city council over-rides a veto, the mayor has to sign it. But this case has brought up two interesting questions. If the Shreveport Dog Park Alliance had not sued the mayor, could the city council have taken the mayor to court to force his hand on the dog park funding? Corbin says that's a question that has never been answered. But here's where things get even cloudier. Shreveport City Attorney Terry Scott is the legal counsel for both the city council and the mayor. So if this did end up in court, who would the city attorney represent the mayor or the council? Corbin says the council looked at getting it's own legal counsel to create a firewall, but found out that as the charter states, they can't do that right now. But there might be an easier resolution to this. It happened once before during the Glover administration. It was June 2010 and the issue was embattled former Shreveport Airport Authority Director Roy Miller. City Council Chairwoman Joyce Bowman waited until the mayor was out of town at a convention. While he was gone, she became acting mayor and fired Miller. Corbin says he could do the say thing, but he doesn't feel that is appropriate. He says it gives the mayor an out. Some say even if the mayor is forced to sign the cooperative endeavor agreement, it could be his successor who ends up building any dog park. They say the mayor could accept the money then sit on the construction until he's out of office.

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