May 17, 2012
City Council Chamber
City Council Regular Meeting Summary May 17, 2012
New Orleans, LA - May 17, 2012 - Today, in the New Orleans City Council Chamber, assembled Councilmembers were addressed by Interim District "B" nominee Errol George, organizers of NOLA Navy Week 2012 and representatives of Unity of Greater New Orleans.
Celebrated Success of Nola Navy Week 2012At the request of Council President Clarkson, organizers Mary Beth Romig, Butler Burdine, and Bill Ryan of NOLA Navy Week 2012 appeared before the Council to recap the impact of NOLA Navy Week 2012. The Navy kicked off the three-year national celebration in New Orleans in April. The celebration commemorated the War of 1812 and the Star Spangled Banner Bicentennial. NOLA Navy Week 2012 featured a colorful spectacle of tall ships and modern warships on the East Bank of the Mississippi River which played host to tours for more than 121,000 visitors. Further, ten community service projects were completed by visiting military with approximately 8600 man hours donated to the City of New Orleans. New Orleans was the inaugural city of the national celebration and will conclude here in 2015 during a final celebration of the bicentennial of the Battle of New Orleans
Interim District "B" Nominee Errol George Addressed Assembled Councilmembers
Errol T. George, the nominee for Interim District "B" Councilmember addressed members of the City Council to offer his qualifications. George is an urban and regional planner and business management consultant with experience in community development, program management, and government relations. The District "B" interim Councilmember is not permitted under the City Charter to qualify as a candidate in the election to permanently fill the District "B" seat on the Council. The seat was recently vacated when former District "B" Councilmember Stacy Head won the open Councilmember At-Large seat. Newly seated Councilmember At-Large Stacy Head offered the recommendation of George for the interim post. At the Council's last Regular Meeting on May 3rd, a majority of the seven City Councilmembers voted in support of George's interim appointment. However, due to the lack of a quorum of the legislative body at the Regular Meeting on May 3rd, a Special Meeting on May 16th and today's Regular meeting on May 17th, the recommendation could not be ratified by the City Council.
All Councilmembers acknowledged their disappointment that the District "B" constituents are going unrepresented and important public processes are at a standstill.
Councilmember Head said, "I am proud to make this recommendation. Errol assured me of his strong commitment and that he would be a hands on District B Councilmember. My hope was that this legislative body would come together in fairness and respect. I have reached out to my colleagues and urged them to return to the Chamber and join the majority of the City Council to resolve this issue and the other pressing issues of our City."
Recognized 20th Anniversary of Unity of Greater New Orleans
At the request of Councilmember Guidry, Unity of Greater New Orleans Executive Director Martha Kegel, as well as Sister Anthony Barczykowski, Brenda Richard Montgomery, Clarence Adams, and Luis Zervigon, appeared before the Council to recognize the 20th anniversary of the founding of Unity of Greater New Orleans (UNITY). UNITY, founded in 1992, is a nonprofit organization designated by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) that leads a collaborative of over 60 agencies providing housing and services to the homeless. UNITY leads community-wide strategies to end homelessness in New Orleans and Jefferson Parish. They also raise funds for 48 of its member agencies to provide a range of housing and services for the homeless in the city. Further, UNITY conducts homeless outreach on the streets and in abandoned buildings; rebuilds apartment buildings into homes for those who are homeless or low-income; helps the public locate affordable housing; and advocates for public policy to prevent and reduce homelessness.