"Excuse me, excuse me — no, I'm going to finish. I've never been treated like this in my lifetime and I won't have it. ... Please don't be so rude." — City Council President Jackie Clarkson at a District E town hall meeting in eastern New Orleans last week. Mayor Mitch Landrieu invited Clarkson and other city officials to the meeting, one in a series of town hall discussions on the 2012 city budget. The frustrated, mostly black crowd booed Clarkson when she entered and interrupted her as she defended her record in the east and her memories of growing up in the segregated 1940s and '50s.
"This city is on the best roll I've seen since I was a child," she said.
"For those of you who are also my age, is this not just like the '40s and '50s?"
"Teams of city employees will be dispatched throughout the city to photograph, count, log, remove and dispose of bandit signs and litter. Any bandit sign will be removed, disposed of, and the owner will receive a fine of $25 per sign, or $50 per sign if attached to a tree. Community service is possible for repeat offenders. Fines for littering and illegal dumping range from $150 to $5,000, with the possibility of community service and jail time for repeat offenders. These penalties are determined by the city's Municipal Court." — A release from the Sanitation Department explaining the city's new rules for "bandit" signs, effective immediately following an "amnesty" period ending Sept. 9.