Without digging into the 544 page Operating budget for the City of Shreveport for 2019, I have some suggestions on improvements that the city could make to improve the overall health and happiness of the community.
Health – If you are sick, you can’t enjoy security or education because you can’t focus on anything else. We can create programs which in turn creates employment opportunities.
- Clinics for the less fortunate
- Food and medical provision programs for the homeless
- The city should work with charitable organizations to benefit citizens
- Programs for substance abuse need to be better funded and more wide spread
- ineffectual programs need to be replaced with ones that work
Security – If you are not secure, education and social interaction are the last things on your mind. We need to change perceptions. If one law abiding citizen is afraid of our protectors, we’ve failed.
- More money for fire, police, and other social services.
- Outreach programs involving police and schools
- Outreach programs involving police and fire fighters in lower income areas.
- Harsher penalties for police misconduct
- More training (physical and psychological) for police before they hit the street
Education – An education leads to understanding which fosters security and healthy attitudes in a community. We can create programs which in turn creates employment opportunities.
- Schools need more money so teachers don’t have to buy their own supplies
- Pay teachers more
- Continuing educations programs for adults
- Adult literacy programs hosted by schools and Library branches
- Continuing teen educational programs focused on the arts, technology and literacy
- Continuing adult educational programs involving the arts and technology
- Programs for all ages at parks (edutainment)
- Urban farming and community garden programs should be better promoted
Infrastructure – To grow, a city must have “good bones” and with the aging infrastructure we have now, growth is difficult.
- Water improvements need to continue
- Sewer improvements need to be made a priority.
- Gas improvements need to continue
- We need to be an attractive city to tech companies so we can get fast access and fiber internet options that are not Comcast
Entertainment – Social interaction and communication in relaxed settings like parks, festivals, etc. makes for community and community makes us more secure, healthier, and opens avenues of social education we otherwise wouldn’t have access to.
- Up the number of festivals and musical events in the area
- Make it easier for block parties and smaller festivals to happen city wide
- Restrict the vendors at existing events to local producers, makers, artists, and promote local artisans at specific festivals
- More programs involving the arts and the downtown area
I know this all seems like maybe an oversimplification, but I would ask that you keep an open mind. I’m not trying to reinvent the wheel, but add a few spokes that might make things run a little smoother. City leadership has not been too effective and I think priorities should shift a little bit. What do you think?