While I was reporting our recent article "Ladder Control Problem," on the annual controversy surrounding safety violations along Mardi Gras parade routes, I reached out to District B Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell's office with some questions about city enforcement of the law.
From the story:
Mason Harrison, communications director for newly elected District B City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell, who represents the district that includes most of the Uptown parade route, says Cantrell had not yet heard any concerns from constituents in advance of the parades.
"This is not actively on our radar, but of course it's a concern. Every year it's a concern," Harrison says of the ladder laws. "But we're not doing anything different this year than any other councilmember in the past."
That has apparently changed, judging by a letter from Cantrell to New Orleans Police Department Superintendent Ronal Serpas that Harrison emailed to me last night.
"I have heard extensively from constituents who live along the Uptown parade routes who are exasperated by the lack of enforcement of municipal ordinances that ban the placement of certain household items on the neutral ground," it reads in part. "I am writing to request that the NOPD enforce compliance among paradegoers of the ordinances designed to ensure public safety and avoid the public confrontations over public space that have marred the parade season in the past."
According to Harrison, Cantrell has reached out to District B constituents she's heard from on the problem. She plans to host a roundtable meeting to "discuss ways to improve the existing ordinance or better enforce what’s already on the books."
In related news:
Read the letter: Cantrell_Letter.pdf