Regular Meeting

October 01, 2015 

City Council Chamber

NOLA City Council Regular Meeting News Summary

Thursday, October 1, 2015 - New Orleans, LA - At today's Regular City Council Meeting, the Council convened in Executive Session to discuss pending Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office and Firefighter litigation, created the BP Settlement Fund, established the HireNOLA employment program and welcoming city benchmarks, and passed a series of transportation ordinances.

The Council also passed motions to appoint Pearlina Thomas Chief of Council Utilities Regulatory Staff, establish the City Council Meeting and Holiday schedules for 2016 and moved the starting time of the October 15, 2015 Regular City Council Meeting to 9:30 a.m.

In other business, the Council recognized the 100th Anniversary of Lighthouse Louisiana and the 30th Anniversary of Alliance for Affordable Energy and celebrated the 175th Anniversary of Antoine's Restaurant, home of the world renowned Oysters Rockefeller Dish.

Created the BP Settlement Fund

The Council unanimously adopted Ordinance Calendar No. 30,917, creating a new fund for the receipt and accounting of British Petroleum (BP) settlement funds by the City of New Orleans. The BP Settlement Fund will be established under the Department of Finance, which will administer and deposit all revenues collected from the BP settlement into the account. Under the ordinance, the Director of the Department of Finance is required to keep detailed records of the account and make a report of revenues and expenditures to the Chief Administrative Officer and the City Council as part of the annual City audit.

Council President Jason Williams said, "The establishment of a dedicated BP Settlement Fund is crucial to maintaining transparency and accountability when the City receives revenues from the BP settlement."

Convened in Executive Session to Discuss Pending Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office and Firefighter Litigation

The Council convened in Executive Session to discuss the pending litigation in New Orleans Firefighters, Local No.632, et al. versus City of New Orleans, et al., New Orleans Firefighters Pension Fund, et al. versus The City of New Orleans, et al. and Jones, et al. versus Gusman, et al.

Established the HireNOLA Employment Program

District "E" 
Councilmember Gray
The Council adopted Ordinance Calendar No. 30,925, authored by Councilmember Gray, establishing the HireNOLA program within the Office of Workforce Development, to link local workers with quality employment opportunities created by City construction contracts and economic development projects. HireNOLA sets local worker participation goals for City construction contracts and development projects receiving tax incentives in excess of $150,000. The program requires that at least 30% of all work hours performed by Louisiana workers on City projects are performed by workers residing in Orleans Parish, with no less than 10% of project hours performed by disadvantaged local workers. The ordinance also requires that at least 10% of labor hours performed by Louisiana skilled labor apprentices are performed by disadvantaged local workers. Participation goals will increase by 5% annually over 5 years, subject to review. City contractors and subcontractors will be required to demonstrate good faith efforts in meeting participation goals, as enforced by the Office of Workforce Development. 

District "E" Councilmember Gray said, "The City of New Orleans has many able and talented residents searching for work. With the enactment of HireNOLA, we will be able to connect many of our citizens with quality jobs"

Recognized the 100th Anniversary of Lighthouse Louisiana

Lighthouse Louisiana Outreach and Marketing Coordinator Stephanie Kreller, Paper Towel Manufacturing Specialist David Green and Independent Living Skills and Braille Instructor Rox'e Homstad before the Council
The Council issued a proclamation to Lighthouse Louisiana, recognizing the organization's 100th Anniversary. Lighthouse Louisiana, formerly known as Lighthouse for the Blind, provides job placement, training, and supportive services for people with sight and hearing disabilities. Presenting before the Council were Lighthouse Louisiana Community Outreach and Marketing Coordinator Stephanie R. Kreller, Paper Towel Manufacturing Specialist, David Green, and Independent Living Skills and Braille Instructor Rox'e Homstad, outlining the organization's efforts in providing living assistance and meaningful employment for those with disabilities.

Today, with its state-of-the-art manufacturing center and dedicated development and rehabilitation services, the organization meets the needs of blind and visually impaired, hard of hearing and deaf, and individuals with other disabilities by creating jobs, developing new programs and providing quality products to the public.

District "A" Councilmember Guidry said, "Lighthouse Louisiana's legacy in New Orleans is immeasurable. The organization's programming and support services have allowed disabled residents in our communities to live happier, more independent lives." 

Established Welcoming City Benchmarks

District "B"  
Councilmember Cantrell
The Council passed Resolution No. R-15-454, authored by Councilmember Cantrell, establishing benchmarks to create a more welcoming city environment for all New Orleans residents. The Council will work in conjunction with the Mayor's Office to set benchmarks in the following areas: language access; police and community relations; cultural competency and economic opportunity. 

Language access benchmarks include utilizing multilingual messages in the City's 311 phone line and emergency messaging; utilizing bilingual 911 dispatchers proficient in Vietnamese and Spanish; expanding translation services in high need City departments and raising awareness of these services. 

Police and community relations benchmarks include reporting the use, effectiveness and frequency of NOPD translation services; increased hiring of multilingual officers; and increased outreach and education about NOPD's bias-free policing policy. 

Cultural competency benchmarks include the addition of multicultural holidays to the City calendar; the display of more country flags on the second floor balcony of City Hall and more opportunities for diverse religious leaders to participate in the City Council and other City events' invocations. 

Economic opportunity benchmarks include increased outreach to organizations that provide information, technical assistance and financing opportunities to small businesses and entrepreneurs from immigrant communities; increased Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) outreach to Spanish-speaking and other non-English speaking businesses; and ensuring open access for all residents to job training and placement services. 

District "B" Councilmember Cantrell said, "These benchmarks were designed in collaboration with community members and the Mayor's Office to help ensure that the City of New Orleans develops a more inclusive and receptive environment for present and future residents of all backgrounds." 

Passed Series of Transportation Ordinances

District "D" 
Councilmember Brossett
The Council adopted a series of ordinances authored by Councilmember Brossett relative to driver's permit issuance, substance abuse testing for certificate of public necessity and convenience (CPNC) holders and motor vehicle inspections. 

The Council adopted Ordinance Calendar No. 30,876, amending the prescription periods for certain offenses when obtaining a driver's permit, revising the offenses that disqualify and temporarily prohibit driver's permit issuance, and requiring background checks for driver's permit applicants. 

The ordinance reduces the time individuals must wait to apply for a driver's permit for the following offenses:
  • Battery, Robbery, Burglary, Assault and Kidnapping - Prescription period reduced from lifetime to 5 years.
  • Sale, Distribution, Possession with Intent to Distribute - Prescription period reduced from lifetime to 3 years.
  • Possession/Use of Controlled Dangerous Substances - Prescription period reduced from 5 years to 3 years.
  • Multiple Felony Offences - Lifetime prescription period if separate incidents.
The ordinance also clarifies that the prescription period runs from the end of incarceration rather than the end of probation, and that court sanctioned expungements will absolve permit applicants of the conviction for the purposes of obtaining a driver's permit. 

The Council also adopted Ordinance Calendar No. 30,875, removing substance abuse testing requirements and penalties for CPNC holders. Operators of vehicles for hire will still be required to submit to drug testing within 24 hours of an accident.

The Council also adopted Ordinance Calendar No. 30,911, authored by Councilmember Brossett, making changes to the fee structure for motor vehicle inspection certificates and stations and motor vehicle inspection standards. Under the ordinance, all vehicles registered in the City of New Orleans will be inspected by the Department of Safety and Permits, or an authorized inspection station, at least once every other year unless the vehicle has a weight rating of over 6,001 pounds, in which case, it will be inspected on an annual basis. 

Inspections will determine if vehicles are equipped with functioning safety devices, as required by city and state law, and adequately covered by liability insurance, as required by state law. Vehicles that fail inspection will be issued a rejection card detailing the mechanical issue or lack of liability insurance. The rejection card will serve as a substitute for an inspection certificate for no more than 10 days while repairs are made or proof of insurance is provided. 

Inspection certificate fees will be assessed by vehicle weight:
  • $40.00 for vehicles with a weight rating over 10,001 pounds
  • $30.00 for vehicles with a weight rating between 6,001 and 10,000 pounds
  • $25 for all other vehicles
Late fees will be assessed at a rate of $2.00 per month and will not exceed the price of an annual inspection sticker. All certificate fees will be deposited in the City's general fund.

In related business, the Council adopted Ordinance Calendar No.30,926, authored by Councilmembers Williams and Brossett, establishing a maximum fare of $24.00 for airport shuttle transportation between New Orleans hotels and Louis Armstrong International Airport. 

District "D" Councilmember Brossett said, "With the passage of these transportation ordinances, we have tweaked and improved the relevant laws for a better and more common sense approach."

Recognized the 30th Anniversary of the Alliance for Affordable Energy

Alliance for Affordable Energy CEO Casey DeMoss 
before the Council
The Council recognized by proclamation the 30th Anniversary of the Alliance for Affordable Energy, a consumer watchdog and environmental advocacy organization. Presenting before the Council was Alliance for Affordable Energy CEO Casey DeMoss, highlighting the organization's efforts to promote fair, affordable and environmentally responsible energy in Louisiana through education, advocacy and policy initiatives. With its three central programs: Clean Energy, Consumer Protection, and Education and Energy Efficiency, the Alliance is committed to promoting a new vision for energy policy in Louisiana.

In celebration of its thirty years of policy work and community organization, the Alliance will be hosting a 'Lighting the Way' Gala on November 5th at the Arbor Room and Popp Fountain in City Park. 

District "A" Councilmember Guidry said, "The Council would like to commend the Alliance for Affordable Energy for their thirty years of important work promoting clean, affordable energy for New Orleans' current and future residents and business owners." 

Received Presentation Celebrating Antoine's 175th Anniversary

Antoine's Restaurant 
CEO Rick Blount
The Council received a presentation from Rick Blount, CEO and owner of Antoine's Restaurant, celebrating the restaurant's 175th Anniversary. Blount, a 5th generation relative of the restaurant's original founder, Antoine Alciatore, highlighted Antoine's historic position as the oldest family-owned restaurant in the United States. Located on St. Louis Street in the French Quarter, Antoine's restaurant is also the oldest French-Creole fine dining restaurant in New Orleans. 

Since its establishment in 1840, the Alciatore family members and descendants have guided the restaurant towards greatness, inventing its world-renowned signature dish, Oysters Rockefeller, in the late 1800s. The restaurant has also received numerous awards, including the Lafcadio Hearn Award, presented through the Chef John Folse Culinary Institute, and was named to the Southern Food & Beverage Museum's National Culinary Register. 

To celebrate its 175-year legacy, Antoine's is hosting a block party on October 2nd on the 700 block of St. Louis Street, including a complimentary champagne toast by Blount, as well as a ticketed Prohibition Gala on Saturday, October 3rd. 

The Council also passed Resolution No. R-15-482, authored by Councilmember Ramsey, recognizing the contributions of Antoine Alciatore and his descendents to the culinary and cultural traditions in New Orleans.

District "C" Councilmember Ramsey said, "We are proud of our City's rich, famed culinary history. Since its founding, Antoine's Restaurant has played a significant role in both establishing and supporting New Orleans' French-Creole culinary tradition. For this, we are incredibly grateful to Antoine Alciatore and his descendants for their commendable contributions to our City's culinary culture."

Created on: 6/21/2018 11:32:52 AM | Last updated: 6/21/2018 11:32:52 AM


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