SHREVEPORT TAXPAYERS FUND CITY HALL COVER-UP
Sunday, October 8, 2017 … 12:10 P.M.
Documents now seeping into the public record clearly detail how Mayor Ollie Tyler – and more and more attorneys funded by taxpayers – are working to kill legal discovery at the heart of the City Hall water and sewer billing scandal.
In both her fear of that discovery process and protection of certain suspects, Tyler directs an effort which is much more an official cover-up than a search for facts and truth.
In context, last Tuesday’s KTBS Television news report is notable:
“Federal authorities are asking questions about whether companies seeking lucrative contracts with the city of Shreveport were subjected to outside influence peddlers promising access at city hall, KTBS News has learned.” (SEE related article link, below.)
For years, reports of contractor shakedowns and kickbacks have swirled around our mayors.
My sources long ago identified three men tied to ex-Mayor Cedric Glover as recent doers, with the Architect & Engineering Selection Committee their playground.
Having devolved over time from its 1988 good-government roots, the “A & E Committee” includes only two members – the City Council chairperson and Council Clerk – who are not mayoral picks.
Five members are city government directors – public works, water and sewer, airports, city engineer and Metropolitan Planning Commission (MPC) – and two are “citizens” appointed by mayors and confirmed by the Council.
One “citizen” member – originally a Glover pick – is local commercial / industrial safety equipment contractor Linda Biernacki, also a prominent Shreveport political player.
The other “citizen” appointee – also picked by Glover – is Committee Chairman David Aubrey, Glover’s close personal friend.
Aubrey’s powerful seat in Shreveport city government notwithstanding, he works and lives in Baton Rouge.
Thus the screaming question: why does Mayor Tyler prefer to keep Glover’s two “citizen” appointees on the Committee?
Given such facts, recent related developments are more than merely worrisome.
On July 20th, Sand Beach attorney Jerry Harper subpoenaed Aubrey to depose him about businesses he owns, Glover / Tyler campaign director Lynn Braggs, and Aubrey’s dealings with some engineering firms.
Edwin Byrd – yet another attorney taxpayers are now funding – objected, and Harper voluntarily issued a narrower subpoena.
That did not matter. On September 29th, Byrd filed a “Motion for Protective Order” to quash the Aubrey deposition, along with production of related documents.
Byrd notably opposed Harper’s request for Aubrey’s emails, text messages, and cell phone records which include two notables in the water and sewer billing debacle, Lynn Braggs and Justin Haydel of Manchac Consulting Group.
Foolishly, Aubrey reported his cell phone stolen just after his subpoena was served.
While protecting Aubrey, Tyler has also – twice – refused to answer Harper’s questions about the subject federal probe by claiming the FBI ordered her not to talk about it.
Days ago, yet another attorney issued a statement by Tyler avowing “there is no federal investigation of the city.”
Up jumps the devil …
… which is it, Mayor? The FBI ordered you not to discuss the FBI investigation, or there is no FBI investigation?
Now, in an October 4th city attorney letter written for Tyler, Caddo District Judge Ramon Lafitte is asked to directly “… assist during (Tyler’s) deposition.”
Such is no surprise since her deposition will be under oath.
One thing is certain: Mayor Tyler’s actions are not those of an innocent public official.
… To be continued …
© 2017 Elliott Stonecipher … ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Stonecipher article, October 3, 2017, KTBS-TV report: