Most of Uptown New Orleans appears likely to avoid a political tug-of-war over redrawing City Council boundaries, though one proposal would change the representation for a handful of neighborhoods along Jefferson Avenue. Of the five proposed redistricting plans unveiled this weekend, four show no changes to representation Uptown whatsoever, and one slides six voting precincts along Jefferson Avenue from Councilwoman Susan Guidry’s District A into Councilwoman Stacy Head’s District B.
For the last decade, all of Uptown has been divided between districts A and B along a line that runs the length of Jefferson Avenue from the river to Fontainebleau, then heads up Carrollton toward Mid-City. Guidry represents everything upriver of Jefferson into Lakeview (including the Audubon, Carrollton, Riverbend, and Leonidas neighborhoods); Head represents everyone downriver into the Central Business District (including Freret, Milan, Touro, the Garden Distirct and the Irish Channel); and both reach into parts of Mid-City. District A lost fewer people since 2000 than the rest of the city, so Guidry will have to give up some territory. District B’s population loss was about the same rate as the city as a whole, so it does not need any changes at all, and under some of the possible scenarios it simply is left touched.
An officer with New Orleans Private Patrol chased a coyote through the stately streets surrounding Audubon Park last weekend, prompting a warning to area residents to watch their pets. Capt. James Baldassaro was called to a home on Garfield Street near State last Friday for a sighting of coyote on the loose. While he was writing the report, he said, the coyote emerged from a side yard and began loping down the street. He followed it until it reached Camp Street headed toward Jefferson reaching the outer boundaries of the neighborhoods patrolled by New Orleans Private Patrol. Baldassaro said he contacted the New Orleans Police Department and a private wildlife removal company, but has not heard since Friday whether the animal found or seen again.
A plan to create formal councils of neighborhood groups to increase citizen participation in city government would only “many more layers of bureaucracy” and should be scrapped, according to a letter from the Garden District Association published by The Lens. The letter suggesting changes to the Citizen Participation Project was written by Shelley Landrieu, director of the Garden District group but also a leader of the Baronne Street Neighborhood Association and Audubon Area Zoning Association. Instead of new councils based on city planning districts, the Garden District would prefer more formalized opportunities for neighborhood association input within the city’s existing policy-making process. The director of the group that drafted the plan told Karen Gadbois of The Lens that the Garden District had drawn “inaccurate conclusions.” The letter was copied to numerous other neighborhood groups, including many in the Uptown: the Irish Channel Neighborhood Association, the Touro Bouligny Association, the Baronne Street Neighborhood Association, the St.