Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Mayor presents BNOB plan
By Bruce Eggler
After eliminating all recommendations that would have prohibited any of the city's neighborhoods from participating in its rebuilding process, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin on Monday night presented a blueprint for restoring and improving the hurricane-devastated city.
"It will take each and every one of us to pull this off, but if we work together, we can achieve great things," Nagin said at the end of a nearly hour-long speech accepting most of the recommendations presented to him in January by the Bring New Orleans Back Commission.
Nagin appointed the 17-member commission of developers, business people and civic leaders last fall, a few weeks after Katrina flooded most of the city.
Hundreds of people, including at least four City Council members, crowded into a Canal Street hotel ballroom to listen to the speech, which was partly a State of the Union-style laundry list of ideas and initiatives, partly a campaign document for a mayor in the midst of a re-election race.
LPNS COMMENTARY: The endorsed Republican candidate Peggy Wilson took the microphone at the meeting to jeers from some in the crowd and outlined her "tax free city" plan. Some have questioned the wisdom of Wilson using the politically provocative term ‘welfare queen’, referring to welfare cheats, instead of the more politically correct ‘welfare fraud.’
Only time will tell if her attacks on “pimps, drug dealers, gang bangers and welfare queens” returning to the much abused and wretched housing projects was a sign of common sense or a political turn off.
TO QUOTE WWL RADIO BROADCASTERS AFTER HER PRESENTATION, THE CROWD RESPONSE TURNED FROM "JEERS TO CHEERS."
FINALLY, SOMEBODY WITH AN IDEA!