SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Both sides in the battle to bring a dog park to Shreveport are now waiting for a judge to decide whether Mayor Cedric Glover should be ordered to sign off on the funding for the park.
It's the latest milestone in a lawsuit filed by the Shreveport Dog Park Alliance, claiming Mayor Cedric Glover is violating the city charter and his oath of office by not approving funding for the $280,000 project already signed by the Shreveport City Council and the Red River Waterway Commission.
A sticking point has been with Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover, who has said multiple times that he thinks that the Waterway Commission money should go up elsewhere.
Attorneys for both sides made their cases in Caddo District Court on Tuesday before Judge Leon Emanuel, but Mayor Glover himself was not present. That's because Judge Emanuel ruled that Glover was exempt from testifying. That means that the Dog Park Alliance cannot question him on the stand, and they cannot subpoena the mayor.
Instead, Glover was represented by two attorneys in court, who declined to comment on the case.
Dog Park Alliance attorney Daniel Keele did want to comment, though. He says the checks and balances within city government worked when the City Council voted to override Mayor Glover's veto of the agreement.
Now, Keele is asking for a writ of mandamus, "which is to have the Mayor ordered to sign it," Keele explains. "He could sign it in the interim and this would all go away."
In spite of Keele's argument that the mayor "has no discretion left" after the City Council voted to override his veto on the agreement, Glover's attorneys
argued in court that the mayor does have further discretion. Still, they faced tough questions from the judge regarding just how much power the City Council has, and how much power the mayor has.
Judge Emanuel is expected to make his decision on May 16.
The proposed park would be located at Hamel Memorial Park, off of Clyde Fant Parkway.