SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins has released a report on his first 100 days in office.
The report says Perkins, who was sworn in as the 57th Mayor of Shreveport on December 29, 2018, “has accomplished more in 100 days than anticipated, but there is still plenty more work ahead.”
In his address, the report says he “outlined his a practical and progressive vision that focused on public safety and economic development. He specifically discussed leveraging technology to make Shreveport safe and more prosperous. 100 days later, his vision is becoming a reality.”
The report summarizes steps taken to fund raises for the city’s sanitation workers, improve the city’s financial outlook, efforts to improve public safety, use technology to save taxpayers money and improve quality of life, attract tech companies and talent, create opportunities for young people through the Mayor’s summer internship program, and touts the diversity of the Perkins administration.
Among the accomplishments touted in the report is the implementation of community-oriented strategies that resulted in police being more visible and an 18% decline in serious crime in January.
Also touted is “Ground Breaking Economic Growth,” featuring the groundbreaking in March on a five-year, $14 million expansion to the Center for Molecular Imaging and Therapy.
The reports notes that Shreveport added 100 jobs in February 2019.
“Since Mayor Perkins took office, the unemployment rate has fell from 5.4% to 4.7%. His administration has aggressively pursued an economic growth strategy that focuses on local businesses and stresses equitable growth.”
The Clean City User Fee was Perkins’ solution to bring sanitation workers’ pay up and solving chronic understaffing in the department. The report says the fee also sidesteps the fiscal disaster that awaits us if we fail to act,” saving Shreveporters money in the long run.
Noting that money was moved from the city’s reserve fund to create the appearance of a balanced budget, the report says Perkins actually inherited an unbalanced budget with just four days’ worth of operating funds. That got the attention of credit ratings agencies, which gave the city a negative rating. Perkins says the sanitation fee improves the city’s financial outlook by lessening the burden on the reserve fund.
The report notes that the appointment of the city’s first-ever Chief Technology Officer foretells a drastic change for the city. Keith Hanson’s job is to “look for ways in which technology can be leveraged to improve life in Shreveport and save taxpayers money.”
Hanson has already digitized the city’s budget, placing it online for citizens to see how their tax dollars are spent, featuring “user-friendly charts and graphs that are responsive.”
The report also touched on efforts to bring and keep tech jobs and talent to the city by “reaching out to the rest of the country letting them know that Shreveport is upgrading our infrastructure and is reaady to do business with tech companies.”
The report also points out that Perkins was able to “maximize the potential of the summer internship program by utilizing public/private partnerships.”