- Elliott Stonecipher
Friday, October 14, 2016 … 8:30 AM
Not since I first reported the CPERS self-pay malfeasance at the Caddo Parish Commission has any mess-up in local government blown-up like this one down at Shreveport City Hall.
Michael Wainwright has written me to further state his case. He, with Scott Pernici, “discovered and investigated” how City Hall had neglected to bill about $1,000,000 in city water usage to apparently wealthier residents.
The Shreveport Times, whose reporter Lex Talamo broke the story, has two updates online, one from mid-day yesterday, and one online this morning. Here is that article link for those who can access it:
The key new information today is the weighing-in of City Council members, weighted heavily toward questioning Mayor Tyler about her decision NOT to bill those who were not billed, and did not pay, for their water usage.
I join those who cannot understand how the Mayor reached such a decision, much less how she can defend it. I suspect there is much more to be known on that score … and it cannot be good for the Mayor.
Mr. Wainwright, who I have known for many years, used a closing to his email which bars me from simply making it publicly available, which I would have preferred. Other friends of his were dispatched to lobby me last night via FB, but to no avail.
Make no mistake, the former Shreveporter and now North Carolinian is (a) an attorney at times very aggressive, (b) very, very smart, and (c) very, very, very well connected to certain political forces here in Shreveport. He is a former member of the Board of the Port of Caddo-Bossier, a very close associate of former Mayor Keith Hightower, and an even closer associate of Hightower’s long-time right-hand, Scott Pernici.
Others connect the two men to ex-Mayor Cedric Glover – which would be even worse news for them if true – but one thing is more certain: they are no friends of Ollie Tyler.
Put more directly, Wainwright and Pernici are a super-potent political duo well known for precisely such ops as the one at issue. There is, to them, a lot of money to be made in this instance, and they intend to make it … especially if Mayor Tyler (a) has screwed up badly enough to throw open that door, and (b) if the two men have not broken one or more laws, especially in the “how” of this battle.
Mayor Tyler has much more explaining to do, as do Wainwright and Pernici, and all of them have our attention. My letter from Wainwright makes it clear that he and Pernici think this instance is one in which they were due a LOT of taxpayer money for “discovering” the under-billing.
Perhaps they will write me again to answer this question: why not just sit down with proper authorities, walk them through how the Tyler Administration messed-up, then bang the table for taxpayers to be made whole, and Tyler be held to account?
Right now, the Mayor looks inept, AND looks like she intends to favor those who were under-billed for their water, an open slap to those who paid their bills properly.
Wainwright and Pernici may have targeted Mayor Tyler for their heavy-handed, profit-making shot, but they are thus far coming across as kicking a deeply wounded city while it is down.
… more later …
© 2016 ELLIOTT STONECIPHER ALL RIGHTS RESERVED