Shreveport Mayor Ollie Tyler’s first term as mayor ends in December of this year and she just announced her intentions to seek a second term.
Although no one has officially announced their intentions or entered the race, several names are the subject of the political hot stove talk.
Caddo Commissioner Steven Jackson has all but announced he will run for mayor. He is former mayor Cedric Glover’s protégé.
Glover has advised he is supporting Jackson for mayor and that he will not seek an unprecedented third term at city hall.
Council member Stephanie Lynch announced this week she will seek a second term on the Council this fall.
Councilman Jerry Bowman is conspicuously quiet on this future political intentions.
Rod Demery, former SPD detective, is considering a bid for the mayor’s office. Demery now works as an investigator for Caddo District Attorney James Stewart.
Tyler, Jackson, Bowman and Demery are African Americans. All are Democrats, except for Demery who is a Republican.
Crime and economic development will no doubt be key issues in the mayor’s race.
Shreveport’s crime rate for 2017 was higher than 2016. The Shreveport murder rate of 50 was the highest in many years.
And although there has been some job expansion in Shreveport since Tyler took office, the city has failed to attract significant new businesses.
The perception that Shreveport has become a stagnant city is a reality that all mayoral candidates must accept. What solutions are offered as a part of election campaigns will be interesting to not only hear but evaluate.
Shreveport citizens will most likely vote on their pocketbooks and their perception of public safety.
John Settle is an attorney and political columnist based in Shreveport-Bossier