Regular Meeting

October 18, 2018 

City Council Chamber

10 a.m., Council Chamber

At today's regularly scheduled City Council meeting, the Council approved the "Ban the Box" ordinance, passed an ordinance to mitigate the risks associated with blighted pools, adopted a resolution with the intent to authorize a new tax to support services for senior citizens, approved an ordinance ending mandatory bicycle registration, as well as a motion directing the City Planning Commission (CPC) to hold a public hearing to permit a hotel in the Marigny.
Additionally, the Council held its 5th annual special order of business in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and heard presentations from the YMCA Children's Unified Benefits and Services (Y CUBS) on its three-year grant to support those with Autism Spectrum Disorder and the Mary Amelia Douglas-Whited Community Women's Health Education Center on "The Health of Women & Girls in Louisiana: Racial Disparities in Birth Outcomes." The Council also presented a special proclamation to Shamar Thompson, a 7-year-old New Orleans resident, who spent his birthday feeding the city's homeless. Click here to learn more about Shamar's inspiring act of kindness.
Members of the Council with Shamar Thompson and family prior to the start of today's meeting


"Ban the Box" Ordinance Passes

The Council approved a "Ban the Box" ordinance that prohibits the City and City contractors from asking potential employees' criminal history on initial job applications. The legislation, which goes into effect March 1, 2019, will allow the Administration time to inform contractors and train employees on the new law.
In 2014, the City enacted a similar policy for classified and unclassified jobs in all City departments, boards, agencies, and commissions. Ordinance 32,382 codifies this policy and extends it to all entities with a City contract, grant, or cooperative endeavor agreement.
"I've heard personal stories from ex-offenders and their families who remind us that, for far too long our criminal justice system has placed its priorities in punishment and not rehabilitation. Ex-offenders should not serve a life sentence after serving time in prison. This new policy allows them a chance to be considered for employment based on their qualifications and experience related to the position they're applying for and not their past," said Councilmember Palmer. "
The City will still conduct criminal background checks on all candidates and make final hiring decisions for people with records in light of other relevant information, including experience, the seriousness of any past conviction, when the incident took place and what has occurred in the applicant's life since then.



Council Approves Measure to Support Senior Citizens

The Council welcomed the New Orleans Council on Aging for a presentation in support of a resolution adopted by the Council today, which calls for a special election to authorize an annual ad valorem tax to support services and programs for senior citizens. At the election on Saturday, March 30, 2019, New Orleans voters will be asked to authorize the Council to levy the tax for a period of five years, beginning Jan. 1, 2020. For more information, click here.
"As I've said before, if we live long enough and are blessed with old age, we will find ourselves in the seats of the great people who are with us today," said Councilmember-At-Large Jason Williams. "I cannot stress enough how important and long overdue this is. I want to thank you all for doing so much with so little for so long, and I want to thank my colleagues for fulfilling this commitment to finally provide dedicated funding for our seniors. We would not be where we are if it wasn't for the sacrifices our seniors have made for us, and during times when things were much harder than they are today. I am confident that the voters of New Orleans will make the right decision and approve this measure at the polls next year."
Local seniors applauding the Council's decision to support services for the elderly community

New Law to End Mandatory Bicycle Registration

The Council passed an ordinance authored by Councilmember Palmer that allows individuals to register their bike(s) voluntarily. This new law ending mandatory bicycle registration is effective immediately. Bicycle registration will still be required by companies that own and/or rent bikes to the public. Ordinance 32,413 will also move administration duties from the New Orleans Police Department to the Department of Safety and Permits.
"Bicycle registration was initially put in place to ensure the safe return of citizen's property, and we hope people will continue to utilize the program. This ordinance changes the registration requirement from mandatory to voluntary for privately owned bikes, while moving program administration to the Department of Safety and Permits. I always want our government to provide the maximum benefit to citizens, and I believe these changes will help accomplish that," said Councilmember Palmer.
While the ordinance removes the mandate to register privately owned bicycles, individual bike owners are encouraged to utilize the program.



Council Approves Ordinance to Mitigate Dangerous Conditions Associated with Blighted Pools

The Council passed an ordinance by District "A" Councilmember Joe Giarrusso regarding blighted pools to clarify the severe risks they pose to the health, safety and welfare of residents and enable the City to take necessary action to enter properties to alleviate dangerous conditions. This measure will protect the numerous children throughout the city who live in homes near neighboring blighted pools.
According to a recent article, the City has identified more than 60 blighted pools throughout New Orleans that have been cited for improper maintenance and unhealthy conditions. One such issue is the threat of mosquitos and associated illnesses such as West Nile, which was found to exist in the city this past summer. Per the legislation, all pools will be required to maintain functioning filtration systems to avoid stagnant water. Additionally, the ordinance states that all pools must be protected by at least a six-foot barrier above the finished ground level and be kept in good and proper order. Any pools that do not meet these criteria will be subject to immediate remediation from the City to avoid harm to residents.
"This is not the only quality of life issue facing New Orleans, but it is an important one, and it affects neighborhoods across the entire city," said Councilmember Giarrusso. "It's time to start putting the interests of those who are living in and contributing to New Orleans over absentee property owners."
Photo of a blighted pool property in Lakeview via Fox 8

CPC to Hold Public Hearing for New Marigny Hotel

The Council passed a motion on behalf of 501 EFA Hotel, LLC directing the CPC to hold a public hearing for consideration of a conditional use to permit a hotel at 501 Elysian Fields Avenue and 548 Marigny Street. If approved, it would be the first major hotel chain to break ground in the Faubourg Marigny neighborhood.
Design plans for a new Hampton Inn on Elysian Fields Avenue via

Created on: 6/27/2018 2:47:58 PM | Last updated: 12/27/2018 1:10:08 PM


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