A new sign is under construction at the corner of Hollywood and Kennedy welcoming visitors to Mooretown, but it sits on airport property, and there are questions about whether the work began with prior approval from the FAA.
It's the result of a partnership between the City of Shreveport and Rep. Barbara Norton. A news release from the City of Shreveport indicates that the sign is on airport property, and it requires approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. The release also indicates that preliminary work began without formal approval, but conceptual approval had been granted, allowing the construction to proceed.
We've raised the question: Did the airport know about the project before it began? The airport deferred questions to the Shreveport's City Attorney's Office. A Freedom of Information request sent to that office only produced a single page described as a screen grab of an FAA application that was approved, although the page was unreadable.
We took our question to Representative Norton but she refused to answer, saying that she had only agreed to answer general questions regarding the sign.
In the city's emailed news release the sign is touted as Norton's vision, and Norton writes in the release that it's purpose is to provide a point of pride in the Mooretown community.
"To have a beautiful spot to look at, and they can just maybe lift their spirit, open their eyes and talk about how beautiful it is," said Norton, who tells KSLA News 12 she has secured $20,000 state money to pay for it. She says she hopes it provides a beautiful spot to view, and that it lifts people's spirits.
It'll cost $40,000 to complete. When asked if this is the best use of taxpayer dollars, Norton replied, "Let me give you a surprise here, this money was secured in 2011, so whatever is going on in '14 this won't have anything to do with that."
Mayor Cedric Glover and Representative Norton are planning an official unveiling of the Mooretown Streetscape in the coming weeks.
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