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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Feedback to NOPD

Major Little NOPD

Today ~2:30-3:OOPM  
A resident was coming home (8300 block of Apricot) from grocery shopping at Roberts and ran into 3 young black men coming out of the alley on the side of her house. They looked like they were carrying stuff under their jackets.  She yelled at them "WTF are you doing!!!" and they scattered.  Another one of our neighbors (from Cambronne) was across the street picking up the priest to take him to the airport.  He followed the 3 guys in his car. They split up and he saw one of the guys had a small silver handgun.  Both residents called 911. I was still on the phone with the home owner so I heard some of the content of our Cambronne neighbor's report over the phone to 911. One of the men returned to Apricot street He had turned his jacket inside out and he got into a small white van (left of resident's house and across from the church) and BACKED UP down the one way street so that the resident was not able to get the license place. The resident seems confident that nothing was taken from her house. Her dogs were upstairs and loud and nasty and her downstairs didn't look broken into.

The cops did arrive very quickly after the 911 reports. 2 cars. They checked out her alleyway. Officer B.Duncan talked to the resident. He took no written notes.  While he was still on the street talking to resident another neighbor from the 8200 Pritchard Place drove up got out of his car and said he saw the same 3 young black men coming out of the alley across the street between a house in the 2900 block of Dublin.  He too yelled at them like Karen and they scattered. He said one guy had on a black leather coat and was black with close cropped hair and shorter than he was which would be less than 5'5" or going by where he had his hand could have been less than 5 feet.  The other 2 guys had on "winter jackets" with their shirts sticking out.  B. Duncan left with our 8200 Pritchard Place neighbor, presumably to take more statements.

While we are pleased that the police showed up so quickly, our conversation with Officer B. Duncan was galling and insulting. He said repeatedly that we lived in a bad neighborhood. As if because of this we should expect to have gun carrying thieves in our alleyways.  WE DON'T.  We had not one but 3 EYEWITNESSES associated with these gun carrying criminals in our neighborhood.  The fact that we were on the street and that the neighborhood watch approach was working and doing exactly what the cops say they want from us didn't seem to matter to the officer because "We live in a bad neighborhood".  When asked what it was that made this a bad neighborhood he said that it is poorly lit (which isn't true) and that Leonidas is "right there".  He said he lived on Pritchard @ Cambronne 2 years ago after Katrina.  Interesting because I never saw him while repeatedly handing our flyers to start our neighborhood organization. We mentioned that the crime statistics do not support the fact that this is "a bad neighborhood".  Officer B. Duncan didn't seem to even hear this.

When we call the cops we do not want to feel like we are being blown off because "we live in a bad neighborhood".  1) Statistically this is not true.  2) Our Neighborhood Watch is very active, as today's actions shows. 3) Our neighborhood organization is very active at work making this better neighborhood, as recent emails regarding tire dumping behind AutoZone shows.  What we expect from NOPD is support when we work against the "bad guys", not flip comments about "living in a bad neighborhood" again in a "what to you expect manner".

Jenel Hazlett - President NorthWest Carrollton

----- NOPD Response -----

Response From: Bruce Little

Sent: Dec 21, 2008 8:57 PM
To:, "Kirk M. Bouyelas"

, Ronald Laporte

Subject: Re: Neighborhood Watch Report
There was no response from me because there were no questions asked of me. It appeared from your email that everyone was pleased with the police response, but you were upset the officer referred to the area as bad. I'm sure he meant no disrespect to anyone personally nor to the community as a whole. I'm quite certain he was warning those involved to be wary and extra careful.  Despite the fact that today is my day off I was out with my officers and personally dispatched all available units in the area to look for these suspects.  Despite our efforts they were not located.  The residences were checked and there were no apparent signs of entry or damage. We don't know what they were up to so no report was taken.  Tying an officer up for an hour writing to write  report on  suspicious persons would be counterproductive and take that unit from responding to other emergency calls. A description was broadcast and all officer noted the descriptions.

I am thrilled by the level of cooperation and response from all of the neighborhood groups in the Second District.  Today was a perfect example of how it is supposed to work

The Second District is currently leading the entire city in not only crime reduction but also leads each week in arrests.  Morale is very high and the officers and citizens are proud of our accomplishments. It is only your organization that continues to send derogatory emails. I'm not sure why but our successes speak for themselves. 

Major Bruce Little
Commander Second District
New Orleans Police Department-
Sent using BlackBerry

----- Followup email-----
Major Little,
It has been a few days since I've personally been on Email.  It's the holidays and everyone deserves a break now and then. 
A couple of things:
I understand that there are times in any job when proficiency and efficiency can appear cold and heartless to those not in the middle of doing the job.  Imagine a surgeon cutting into a patient. Is it possible to do that with out some detachment? How you feel when that patient is your loved one and you are watching is anything but detached.  I'm sure you can see the analogies.
When I wrote my email I wanted to write down what I had seen and heard as quickly as possible so as not to loose anything.  Also I was offended when I wrote it and the combination of being offended and trying to get down all the data may not have been the best combination.
But there is something else in this equation that I am still concerned you may be missing.  The secret to life is public relations. We, all of us law-abiding citizens who want to work with the police, want a RELATIONSHIP with the police of the 2nd district.  We in NorthWest Carrollton know that there are other neighborhoods who "are nicer", have more wealth, have more power, and on the other side of the coin we know there are neighborhoods that are a lot worse than ours, that don't have power or influence.  When officers "dis the hood" while we have folks on the street doing what we can to stop the bad guys the relationship is damaged.  What I was trying to get across in my email was that what was said: "this is a bad neighborhood" damages the relationship.  Given that this was a minor incident in the grand scheme of things, no murder, no gun fire, just gun toting, there was, in my opinion, an opportunity for the police to say something like: "Thanks for being on the lookout, thanks for calling. It is impressive to have so many people work together and report criminal activity. We will let you know what our investigation finds."
See it isn't just about what your people do. As you indicate they did their difficult job but didn't find anything - this time. The problem is that without our email, we would have never known this.  What we would have been left with is a feeling that the cops think this is a bad neighborhood and have blown us off.  And that is inaccurate and damages the relationship and is exactly what can prevent people from calling in next time.  We, the representatives of NorthWest Carrollton, don't want that and neither do you.  My hope when I sent the email was that the information could be helpful but most importantly to let you, as leader of the 2nd district, know how important the "public relations" aspect is of the cops on the street.  The NWCCA board will continue to call on and communicate with NOPD but given a similar experience other members and citizens living in NWCCA might have just climbed back into their holes and checked out or worse "dis'd the NOPD".  And none of us want that.

Thanks for doing the difficult job that you and your team do for us. Have the happiest and safest of holidays,

Jenel Hazlett - NorthWest Carrollton bounded by Claiborne-Carrollton-Earhart-Leonidas

Thursday, December 18, 2008

What is a streetscape?

A streetscape is a public improvement project that will enhance the public area and trigger subsequent recovery and investment in surrounding neighborhoods. This development is designed to help create additional and continued private investment in New Orleans key recovery areas. The streetscape is designed to benefit the surrounding neighborhood residents, business owners and visitors by providing amenities that contribute to economic vitality. Streetscape projects enhance the area surrounding the actual roadway, but do not include roadway repair or reconstruction.
Streetscapes can include: 
  • Sidewalk, bikeway, driveway and other pedestrian surface walkway improvements
  • Traffic and pedestrian signalization and signage
  • Landscaping
  • Lighting
  • Public Art
  • Pocket park improvements
  • Minor utility modifications and improvements

Saturday, December 13, 2008


What & Who: Councilmember Stacy Head will attend the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Irish Channel and St. Mary Overlay Projects completion on Thursday morning. The ceremony marks the rehabiliation of 1.75 miles of roadway throughout the Irish Channel and St. Mary neighborhoods.

When: Thursday, December 11, 2008 11:00 a.m.

Where: Burke Park (Uptown) Annunciation St, between 2nd & 3rd St.

Background: As a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, an estimated 17,000 individual sites (roadway and sidewalks) and 6,000 blockers were damaged due to flooding in 80 percent of the City. To date, the City has completed 13 roadway and walking path projects and also completed more than 2,275 repairs to city streets and sidewalks damaged by the storms of 2005.

REALITY CHECK: Really? Oh Yeah, the flood waters were REAL DEEP in the Irish Channel and on the Isle of Denial. As a New Orleans citizen who DID have ~3 FEET of Water in the streets of her neighborhood, this is nothing short of insulting. Stacy Head does good work and I admire her, but having “recovery work” work done in the IRISH CHANNEL and having the audacity to say the damage to the road way was Katrina/Rita related is inappropriate and INSULTING to those whose neighborhoods were ravaged by flooding and postK cleanup. How much does it cost the city to plan & execute a ribbon cutting ceremony for less than 2 miles of roadway in an area of town that DID NOT FLOOD!?

We all need to keep our eyes on the recovery ball. You can’t talk about efficiency in budgeting and city services and do things like this at the same time. Focus. Focus. Focus!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Entergy and the joys of having a MONOPOLY

Folks, Maybe you heard about Shelley Midura and Rod West going after it regarding “contract issues”. Maybe you didn’t.

EVERYONE should read Clancy Dubos on the Blog of New Orleans. Make sure you read the article AND scroll all the way down to where Clancy rebuts some of the stuff in the comments.
This is only just heating up and it will eventually hit your checking account.

Free Concert in Palmer Park

LPO and Palmer Park ConcertBring a picnic and enjoy music outdoors!

SATURDAY October 11, 2008 - 5:00pm

Musical SelectionsVoyages with the LPO!
Overture to HMS Pinafore
Handel Water Music
Under the Sea from The Little Mermaid
Selections from South Pacific
Armed Forces Salute
Selections from Pirates of the Caribbean
Harry’s Wondrous World fromHarry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Music from Apollo 13
Star Trek through the Years
Selections from E.T. The Extraterrestrial

Rain date: Sunday, October 12, 5:00 PM

The LPO concert in Palmer Park is made possible byDistrict A Councilmember Shelley Miduraand by Harrah’s Community Support Grant Program.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Earhart Expansion Schematic

In June 2008, NorthWest Carrollton invited Department of Public Works Robert Mendoza and team to talk to us about the new that Earhart would finally be resurfaced. What the plans showed was that Earhart would be expanded from 4 to 6 lanes and that a left turn lane would be placed at Carrollton and Earhart.

Citizen reaction to this plan was not good. A Carrollton Area Network meeting was held at St. Matthew's and the reaction at this meeting was essentially the same.

The citizen proposal was created and meetings were held with Department of Public Works and Regional Planning. Traffic studies were done and traffic models created. The citizen proposal had the best traffic flow in the models.

Democracy worked.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Thank You Marc Robert - POWER update

Smart enough to place a generator at his new store on Claiborne & Dublin, Robert was open for business on WEDNESDAY. Thank you Marc Robert.

On Wednesday about 1/2 of the neighborhood had power. By Friday power came back on for most of the rest of the neighborhood. The street light at Walmsley/Apple & Carrollton is now working. This should prevent the accidents we saw after Katrina. The power was still out at Earhart & Carrollton.

Should we EVER have to do this again please leave your porch light on. This will allow us to drive down the streets in the neighborhood and report which blocks *look* like they have power. Even when the bulk of a neighborhood has power there can still be some houses without. IF you don’t have power when you return report the outages to Entergy at 1-800-9-outage. Entergy is working hard to get the power back up a soon as possbile.

When you see the trucks - stop and tell them THANK YOU.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Why come back (and why not come back) - PostGustav Evacuation

O.K. That’s it I’ve had it. I am tired of unthinking or flat foolish people saying things regarding our return to OUR CITY!

So let’s list it out for those who can’t think it out for themselves:

1) My job requires me to return. Yeah they can make a lot of noise about “Tier 1″, but there are MANY companies who have to know that their PEOPLE are back before we begin to get our city back (power or no power). Let’s think about who these companies are. Let’s take the example of the saints game this weekend. WHO do we neeed? Ticket takers, concession stand workers, parking lot workers, cleaning staff, building maintenenace staff, security staff. Now that you are thinking about the fact that you need your fellow citizens start thinking about other services. Do you want your gabage picked up? Do you want to be able to go to the grocery store? Do you want to be able to fill your tank? Do you think filling your tank takes place 100% withOUT people? We are all Tier 1 because without citizens there is no city.

2) My finances require me to return. Some of us are lucky enough to have family and friends to take us in indefinately and do NOT have to return to work. Thank goodness for family and friends. Some of us have the means to fly to New York or California or Europe. Yes believe it or not some New Orleanians spent their Katrina evacuation in France. Some of us have the financial means to whip out a Credit Card and stay indefinately in a hotel. Think about the people who make up this city. REALLY think about it. Think about the state of the economy in this country and tell me that you realy believe that the bulk of the citizens of New Orleans, many who are financially strapped because of Katrina Recovery, and tell me you can’t understand why they might want to come home.

3) My house is MY HOUSE and it is MY HOME! While family and friends are great and a hotel stay may be fun, my house is my home. I want to see how it faired in the storm. If there are damages that need to be addressed I want to do it as fast as possible to prevent further damage. But more importantly ESPECIALLY POSTKATRINA! I want to be HOME, in my HOUSE, in my neighborhood! Kids want a return to normalcy. They want to go to THIER Schools with THEIR Friends and not to an “evacuation school”. People who could not go home quickly postKatrina want to come home quickly now. There is very little to prevent this.

That said there are some reasons to stay away. Let’s talk about those.

1) If you have critical medicial needs: like a requirement for oxygen (which requries power) or dialysis or ongoing speciality disease treatment that can be handled by facilities where you are, you need to stay where these services are readily available. Yes, we have hospitals. But the entire electrical transmission system (the interstate highway of power) is severely damaged. NorthWest Carrollton does not currently have power. Even if we get power as the systems are repaired there maybe temporary but significant power outages. THINK before you move if you have medical needs.
2) The entire electrical transmission system (the interstate highway of power) is severely damaged. Yes, Entergy is working diligently to repair this system, but this is NOT just a New Orleans problem this is a River Parish problem that includes Baton Rouge (and I’m not talking about the governor, I’m talking about the power grid infrastructure.) So if you want to come home KNOW that you could be in the dark and living out of an ice chest and cooking on the grill for quite some time. No power, No Air Conditioning! Can you and your family stand each other for days in the heat? Do you have a generator and the means to fill it with gas? Do you have ice chests and the means to fill them with food? Because their are few to no groceries open today. Make SURE that you have enough gas for your vehicle to get you all the way HOME. No power, no working gas pumps. THINK camping. Think October 2005. Think seriously roughing it. Make an informed decision.

IF you do return, Think traffic safety! Assume every non-functioning traffic signal is a 4 way stop. People have reverted to PostKatrina driving habits and not all of these are good. Be safe. Make an informed decision.

The city needs to think about this:
People won’t leave if they can’t come back.

Let us not forget that the people who live in New Orleans survived the months following Katrina. Power? Please. Post K I didn’t have Gas at my house and therefore no heat and no hot water until Christmas 2005. Flushing the toilet with a bucket, yep. We lived in houses with gutted bottom floors with NOTHING in them and if we were lucky enough to have 2nd floors lived there or in formaldehyde FEMA tin cans. We lived in these circumstances for MONTHS, not days. MONTHS. Some of us YEARS. If there is one thing that the politians in the city of New Orleans should know by now is that we are tough enough to deal with adversity. We can live without power. We can cook on our grills. We can haul in food and water if that is what we are told to do. We can make the determination NOT to return if we feel that is best for our own personal circumstances. But I believe that the at the very least what we have earned is the right to make our own determination about what is best for us. The Mayor needs to stop acting like Big Brother and should not treat me or my neighbors as children.

Friday, August 29, 2008

5 Myths about Katrina

The national press is finally beginning to understand that New Orleans and the surrounding areas are not just below sea level areas of the country where people just should not live. I even saw coverage that touched on the wetlands and MRGO and the damage done to the wetlands by the oil and gas companies that put fuel in the nations cars and heat homes in the northern US in the winter.

Encourage your friends and family to watch this video put together by

Friday, August 8, 2008

Robert Fresh Market Open in August

Finally the grocery store is here!

See their website for details on all the offerings.

Yeah! Marc Robert for your perseverance to get to this day.
We are thrilled to have your in our neighborhood!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

S&W Leaks

Thank you very much for your help. BOTH leaks have been repaired.

Happy 2009! Sincerely, Jenel Hazlett - NWCCA


From: NorthWest Carrollton <>
To: "" <>, Shelley Midura <>
Subject: Large Leaks in 8500 Block of Apricot & 8300 Block of Pritchard

Date: Dec 27, 2008 12:38 PM

Happy Holidays,

I am hoping that you can help us contact the right people at Sewerage & Water Board who can help us get action on 2 large leaks in NorthWest Carrollton.  

The first photo is of the leak at 8300 Pritchard Place. It has been reported to Sewerage & Water Board from this address.  The leak is on the street side of the water meter. At first we were not sure if it was a leak or rainwater, but now we can literally see it getting larger every day.

The second photo is of the leak in the 8500 block (even side) of Apricot Street.  It has been reported by the folks at 8530 Apricot, repeatedly for more than a month.  The exact source is hard to determine The surrounding area is soggy and the puddles stretch for half a block.

Any thing you can do to expedite these repairs before things get worse is appreciated.

NorthWest Carrollton
8500 block of Apricot 8300 block of Pritchard Place

Monday, April 21, 2008

Earhart Planning - Citizen Proposal

Earhart Expansion Schematic
The Citizen proposal was reviewed and endorsed by the Regional Planning Commission & New Orleans Public Works in the Fall of 2008.

A public meeting was held in April 21 @7PM at St. Matthew’s Church, 1333 South Carrollton Avenue and follow up meetings were held with Regional Planning & Public Works.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Harvard Presentation

In 2007/2008 NorthWest Carrollton participated in meetings in held as part of Harvard University's Broadmoor Project. Click here to see our neighborhood presentation.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Economics of Neighborliness

I’m reading Bill McKibben’s book, Deep Economy. It has some very interesting ideas to consider. Personally I think “Local” is the “new Green”.

But decide for yourself. Come and see Bill McKibbin discuss his book in person at the Garden District Book Shop on March 12th from 5:30 to 7:30PM.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008


Urban Conservancy, City Council, Senator Grey:

NorthWest Carrolltion would like to talk with someone in your organization regarding work that will soon begin on Earhart.

Wednesday February 20th, Robert Mendoza came to our neighborhood meeting and gave us the low down on the Earhart “repairs”. While we are glad to see these much needed repairs move forward we were not happy with what we heard regarding the plan.

Currently Earhart is 3 lanes (each way for a total of 6) in Jefferson Parish and then merges to 2 (each way for a total of 4) as it enters Orleans at the overpass. The “repairs” will cause Earhart to be 3 lanes in Jefferson Parish, drop to 2 at the overpass, EXPAND to 3 at the base of the overpass in Orleans, grow a total of 5 lanes (8 lanes both ways!) at Carrollton & Earhart and then drop back to 2 on the Orleans side of Carrollton. Nothing in anything we have read regarding Earhart improvements mentioned increasing the number of lanes. What we naively assumed was that the street would be repaired and proper curbs and sidewalks installed.

While we can appreciate that modifications may be necessary to help traffic flow at Carrollton and Earhart and we completely support a marked and dedicated turning right turning lane (to the river) at Carrollton, we are concerned about the total lost of green space in the center of this intersection to allow for 2 turning lanes onto Carrollton toward the lake. We are also disappointed that NO effort has been made to provide a marked and dedicated turning lane off of Carrollton and onto Earhart toward Jefferson Parish. Anyone who has used this intersection knows that this is a traffic issue in the evenings.

In the process of creating the plan for Earhart there has been no discussion of bike racks and very little thought given to green space and tree cover. There is a requirement to put in sidewalks and ADA crosswalks because of the associated federal dollars. But we see very little in the plan that looks at the whole picture or the long haul. Will people really use the sidewalks if they are right on top of the 3 lane “highway”? This is one of the last opportunities that we will have to improve Earhart for a long time. With all the planning that has been done in the city of New Orleans it would be nice to see some broader thinking. Many of the planning sessions that New Orleanians participated in discussed a need for better integrated streets, sidewalks and bikepaths, some of them specifically referred to Earhart.

Why are we making what should be an “Urban Corridor” into a 6 lane highway? 8 lanes at Carrollton Avenue?

Does anyone remember that Earhart was part of the horrible idea of a Vieux Carre INTERSTATE?

What sense does it make to have Earhart be come 3 lanes on each side only to drop to 2 (on each side) as it crosses Carrollton?

What sense does it make to have the overpass at the Jefferson/Orleans line drop to 2 lanes only to widen to 3 lanes in Orleans Parish. Won’t this only encourage speeding on what should be an Urban Corridor and partially residential street? Once traffic is slowed down from the 3 lane Jefferson part of Earhart by the overpass and narrows to 2 lanes in Orleans WHY allow it to spread out and speed up again?

We hope that there are opportunities to tweak the plan to provide for more green space and to reassure residential and business owners that the intent is not to create a Veterans highway like environment in New Orleans. We CHOOSE to live in New Orleans and it is the character of New Orleans streets that we wish to retain. Please see that attached article written by a graduate student at UNO.

We look forward to hearing from you regarding the concerns expressed by the neighbors of NorthWest Carrollton.

Jenel Hazlett – President, NorthWest Carrollton Civic Association

Thursday, January 3, 2008

A Tale of 2 Januarys

January 2006. I’ve been back in my home since October 2005. The bottom floor of our house is gutted. We have replaced our water heater, a washer & dryer. My husband and daughter came home to our raised bungalow from Austin, TX in November 2005. We finally got gas service in December 2005. I’ve been driving from Carrollton to my job at the Chalmette Refinery through postapolcalytic New Orleans for months. My route usually takes me down Carrollton to I-10 to the Claiborne exit and then to Franklin where I jump to St. Claude. The Claiborne bridge has been raised since I returned. The only 2 routes into Chalmette are either via Paris Rd or St. Claude, limited access and both routes require you to go through a military/police check point.

I watched the tide rise and fall from my porch before we floated ourselves and our bicycles out on air mattresses and then rode to I-10 & Causeway. I slept under the I-10 and had FEMA throw bottled water and MRE’s at me. I’ve gutted my own house and driven past more dead refrigerators and tatoo’d houses and debris piles bigger than garbage trucks than I can count. I repeatedly worked side by side with the folks removing debris piles sweeping and scooping the debris from in front of my home. I drive past the devastation and emptiness daily. I have a profound sense of loss but I’m tough and grateful. I have a job, a home, my daughter can return to school, my husband is working on our lower floor, we had insurance. I know that it could be worse. My mom lost everything in her lower 9th Ward home, her job moved to Covington then the Mississippi gulf coast. My brother lost everything in his home in old Arabi. His job is here. His family is still in South Carolina.

In December 2005 I take what is left of my 2005 vacation and spend some down time at home with my family, a real luxury. Then in January 2006 I drive back to work, down Carrollton to the I-10 to the Claiborne exit, down Claiborne. But it’s been 2 weeks and I am on automatic pilot so I forget to turn on Franklin, I reach the foot of the Claiborne bridge and see that it is open. Cool. Great. Progress, right? I drive over the bridge and there to my left is the barge that split the levee still sitting amide what is left of the broken and battered homes. I gasp out loud. How can I still be shocked? I keep driving and there at the foot of the bridge is a house in the middle of the right hand lane. I have to veer around it. I drive on to work but feel gut punched. But the time I get to the light at Claiborne and Caffin I have tears running down my cheeks. I’m a bit bleary eyed as I go through the checkpoint on St.Claude/St.Bernard Hwy. but the cop on this watch has seen it before. I show him my badge and go through. I’m recovered enough to put in a days work before I drive home through the devastation again.

January 2008
I’ve been on vacation putting the finishing touches on our downstairs. It’s been 2 weeks since I’ve driven down Carrollton to the I-10 to the Claiborne exit, down Claiborne across the Claiborne bridge to Chalmette. As I come up over the bridge there on the left are rows upon rows of little pink houses. And I smile broadly at the vibrant image of hope and say out loud “Thank You Brad Pitt”.

January 2006 Despair . January 2008 Hope.