NEW ORLEANS - District "D" Councilmember Brossett is proud to announce several significant updates for his district and the entire City of New Orleans, including the following legislative and land use accomplishments:
Living Wage Ordinance
I recently authored and passed significant accountability improvements to the City's living wage ordinance at the July 2nd City Council meeting. I added new language to the ordinance, which I initially passed in 2015, that stipulates accountability measures by instituting annual reporting requirements for City contracts and ensuring that the living wage requirement in multi-year contracts is adjusted annually for inflation.
The Council and the public have a right to know that tax dollars are being spent responsibly, which includes ensuring that contract employees receive living wages and paid leave. Starting in 2021, as part of the annual budget presentation, the relevant City Department will provide the Council with a yearly accounting of all city contracts and city financial agreements involving a covered employee. The contract list must identify the hourly wage earned by the lowest paid covered employee and the number of compensated leave days provided to employees earning less than 130% of the prevailing living wage.
These accountability measures help ensure that contractors who receive tax dollars pay their employees a living wage.
Employees paid with city tax dollars have a right to annual adjustments in their wages that account for inflation. To that end, the amendment adds a provision stipulating that any contract or city financial assistance agreement longer than one year include annual inflation adjustments to the mandated living wage requirement. This will ensure that employees receive a living wage for the duration of a contract.
I will continue to champion the living wage ordinance! If you have any input or suggestions on how the Council can continue to strengthen the ordinance, please reach out to my office at 504-658-1040.
Councilmember Brossett and Southeast Louisiana Building Trades and Construction Council Union Members at his food pantry on May 15th at St. Mary of the Angels
Zuppardo's Returns to Gentilly
Please join me in welcoming the Zuppardo family back to Gentilly! When I first took office, I prioritized finding and recruiting high-quality food options in Gentilly.
After many years of hard work, I approved a zoning change at the July 2nd City Council meeting that paves the way for a new Zuppardo's grocery store. The new store will be located on a currently vacant lot at 1328 Senate Street in Gentilly.
The zoning change brings a family-owned food business back to its Gentilly roots. Zuppardo's began in 1929 as a fruit stand at the corner of Gentilly Boulevard and Elysian Fields Avenue. Now, 91 years later, it's reclaiming its Gentilly heritage with a new store only 2 miles from its original location.
The new Zuppardo's is adjacent to Columbia Parc on St. Bernard Avenue near Harrison Avenue. The location has direct public transit service via the #51 St. Bernard-St. Anthony bus route. It is also easily accessible from I-610 via the St. Bernard Ave. Exit.
Regardless of if you walk, bike, drive or take public transit, you will soon have a convenient, high-quality local grocery store in Gentilly!
Dillard University to Add Additional Student Housing
I approved a zoning change at the July 2nd City Council meeting for 4101 Norman Mayer Ave., a location adjacent to the Dillard University campus and owned by the University.
Dillard hopes to return the Norman Mayer Ave. property, which was most recently used for student housing, back to its historical use. The zoning change ensures that the property shall only be used for educational purposes per the limitations contained in the EC Educational Campus District zoning restrictions. Additionally, the change is consistent with the goals and objectives of the City's Master Plan.
This zoning change not only brings a vacant property back into commerce under its historical use; it also incorporates stormwater management best practices, which will help improve the area's resiliency. I want to commend President Kimbrough and Dillard University for their continued leadership on stormwater management.
"We are appreciative of the City Council's approval to rezone the property on Norman Mayer Avenue," Dillard University Walter Kimbrough said. "This paves the way for Dillard to construct a new state-of-the-art dormitory at that site. We thank our neighbors and Councilman Brossett, who were supportive of this process."
Equal Pay Advisory Committee Extended
Over the past couple of years, I have prioritized legislation to address gender pay gaps in City government. This includes, among other initiatives, establishing the Felicia Kahn Equal Pay Advisory Committee. This 11-member Committee researches and identifies recommendations to the Council that will reduce the pay gap and promote income equality within the City workforce.
The Committee's first meeting was in July 2019. Since then, members have worked diligently on gathering and disseminating the information necessary to make meaningful recommendations. They received presentations on various topics, including a comprehensive data analysis on the economic state of women in Orleans Parish and the results of a Pay Equality Study recently commissioned by Civil Service.
The Committee's work is temporarily interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting limitations on public meetings. I authored a motion at the July 2nd City Council meeting to extend the initial Committee term by another year to ensure that the Committee has sufficient time to consider and draft meaningful recommendations to the Council. The Committee now has until June 30th, 2021 to provide their recommendations and feedback to the City Council.
It is my hope that the Committee will be able to resume meetings in the coming months. My staff and I will continue to work with members to ensure that they have the resources and time necessary to complete their important work.
A.P. Tureaud Cultural District
I authored resolution R-20-194 at the July 2nd City Council meeting, calling on the State of Louisiana to create the A.P. Tureaud Cultural District. The resolution was a request by the Preservation Resource Center, in conjunction with St. Augustine High School, Autocrat Club, New Orleans Delta Foundation, NewCorp 7th Ward Revitalization Project, and the Historic 7th Ward Neighborhood Association.
The State Legislature created the Louisiana Cultural Districts Program in 2007 to support community revitalization efforts. Importantly, the designation of a cultural district opens up opportunities for tax credits, which can spur the development of blighted or underused properties.
The proposed boundaries of the A.P. Tureaud Cultural District are St. Bernard Avenue to Elysian Fields and Gentilly Boulevard to N. Claiborne Avenue. It will lie directly in-between the already existing Treme 7th Ward and Gentilly Cultural Districts.
There is a long list of significant cultural contributions to our City that come out of this area, which deserve our recognition and support.
The Preservation Resource Center spearheads the steering committee for the A.P. Tureaud Cultural District. Any stakeholders interested in participating in the district are welcomed and encouraged to contact Nathan Lott, the Policy Resource Director and Advocacy Coordinator for the Preservation Resource Center, for more information.
"We are honored to be working alongside residents and stakeholders to establish the A.P. Tureaud Cultural District in the Historic 7th Ward. We are committed to expanding dialogue with this culturally vibrant community," Danielle Del Sol, Executive Director for the Preservation Resource Center, said. "This resolution is an important step on a continued journey to bring recognition and resources to more of New Orleans' historic neighborhoods."
Chief of Staff
Councilmember Jared C. Brossett, Chair of Budget/Audit/BoR Committee