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Monday, November 28, 2011

Another cry in the wilderness for parking enforcement!

Clear the Walkways: Letter to the Editor
Published: Monday, November 28, 2011, 1:15 AM   Times Picayune /

I have two questions.

First, is blocking a sidewalk with a parked car unlawful? If so, the city's budget could be balanced by tickets on Tchoupitoulas Street alone.

Recently, I was jogging on Tchoupitoulas, and I stopped to attend an elderly woman in a wheelchair who was crying. She was trying to visit her grandchild at Children's Hospital, but she was blocked by heartless people who parked their vehicles on the sidewalk. I had to step out in the street to hold up traffic so that she could cross the street and continue to the hospital.

What good is handicap access at intersections if sidewalks are blocked?

Second, is driving through crosswalks unlawful? Drivers ignore the crosswalks on Magazine Street connecting the zoo and the park. Someone is going to be injured or killed.
At least, we need signs to instruct drivers to brake for pedestrians.

Come on, 2nd District police! Remove those cars and trucks blocking the sidewalks on Tchoupitoulas! Enforce the crosswalks on Magazine!

Ronnie Davis
New Orleans

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Federally recognize the United Houma Nation

Read more about the United Houma Nations struggle for recognition here.

The White House promised to review the United Houma Nation's petition for federal recognition if 25,000 signatures are acquired. At this time yesterday, the count was 4868. Late last night, it passed the 5000 mark. At this pace, the number of signatures will only get to about 6500 by the December 1st deadline. We can all play a role in making this happen if we ask our friends and family to sign.

So click on this LINK to White House.Gov Petitions

CREATE an Account. 
Yes it is a pain to have to create an account. But people must create an account to register themselves as REAL people are signing the petition.
Once you create your account you will get an eMail and you will have to click on the link to validate the account and sign in.  

ONLY then can you actually sign the petition.

It's pointing and clicking.... and a few minutes of your time.

The United Houma Nation has been waiting a long time.

"The United Houma Nation has sought federal recognition for decades. The tribe has been recognized by state and foreign governments as an Indian tribe. In fact, Houma children were forced to attend a segregated Indian school until the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Located along Louisiana's Gulf Coast, the Houma Indian culture and community depend on the wetlands. The BP spill has devastated the Houma. However, BP denied the Houma's claim because they are not federally recognized.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) recommends the United Houma Nation be recognized to preserve the Houma’s culture. An NAACP report stated the oil industry lobby is blocking their request because they want access to lands that would be protected under the federal designation."

---Below is a sample of the Email you will get requiring you to confirm your account---

-----Forwarded Message-----
From: ""
Sent: Nov 12, 2011 5:30 PM
To: Your Email address
Subject: Almost done! Verify your account

You're only one step away from creating your account. Just 
click on the link below to confirm this is a working email address:

IMPORTANT: If you created your account in the process of signing a 
petition on We the People, you still need to click on the "Sign this 
Petition" button on the petition's webpage.

Here is your account information, including an automatically 
generated password:
e-mail: yourEmailaddress
password: theWebGeneratedPassword
More information about accounts is available in the's Privacy Policy ( and the Terms of Participation (!/how-why/terms-participation) for We the People. ------------------------------------------------------- This email was automatically sent by because someone attempted to create a account using the address

Friday, November 18, 2011

Buy Local this Holiday Season!!!!

Birth of a New Tradition (for you mom!)

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high
gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods, and merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor.

This year will be different. This year Americans will give the gift of genuine
concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift
giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes
there is!

It's time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in
a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper? 

Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates
from your local American hair salon or barber?

Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some
health improvement.

Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned
detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a
book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down
the Benjamines on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift
receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or
driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.

There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift
certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about
a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this
isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town
Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or
motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy?

Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a
local cleaning lady for a day.

OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin
their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery
and beautiful wooden boxes.

The Art Market is at Palmer Park on
Saturday November 26 & Sunday November 27
Saturday December 17 & Sunday December 18

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave
your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at
your hometown theatre.

Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese
lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about
fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to
burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

You see, Christmas is no longer about draining American pockets so that
China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about
US, encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow
their dreams. And, when we care about other Americans, we care about our
communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine.
THIS is the new American Christmas tradition.

This is a revolution of caring about each other, and isn't that what Christmas is about?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Enforcement .... Really???

Clipped from the Times Picayune article (in full below):
"Another component of the initiative will be strict enforcement of existing laws, from the ban on parking on sidewalks to hours of operation to responsibilities for cleaning up outside business establishments, the mayor said."

Ok so finally.... neighborhoods have been CRYING for Parking Enforcement forever and NOW that the mayor has linked enforcement to tourism.... and it's his idea... maybe, just maybe we'll get some.   When the infrastructure we do have so so precious and under-maintained we need to do everything possible to keep it functional.  This means *NOT* parking on sidewalk or over curb cuts, not trashing our drains... Good luck Mitch! Let the enforcement begin.

As New Orleans prepares to host an array of high-profile sporting events, Mayor Mitch Landrieu rolled out a new public awareness campaign Monday designed to spruce up the city in advance of the onslaught of visitors.
The city on Monday announced a new public awareness campaign to encourage residents to keep New Orleans clean in advance of several major events. 
"All eyes will be on New Orleans, and it will be once again our time to shine," Landrieu said at an afternoon news conference where he asked locals to embrace the "Don't Trash Dat" slogan that will adorn buses, streetcars, garbage cans, billboards and bumper stickers.
Other similar motivational messages will follow in the coming months.
While the keep-it-clean push will focus on the French Quarter and other downtown "hospitality zones," the mayor said he wants the anti-litter spirit to spread across the city.
"We can clean up, but if you don't throw it down we have less to do. And we need everybody to do their part," Landrieu said. "If you see something on the ground, pick it up. If you see one of you neighbors throw something out of their car, let them know about it."
In January, New Orleans will be home to college football's championship game, followed in the spring by the NCAA Men's Final Four, college basketball's premier weekend. In 2013, the Super Bowl will be here along with the Women's Final Four.
New Orleans also will be the inaugural stop for a three-year celebration of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 in April, serving as home to a fleet of international Tall Ships and U.S., Canadian and British naval vessels.
Those events will join the city's annual lineup, which includes Mardi Gras, the Essence Music Festival, the Bayou Classic, the Sugar Bowl, the French Quarter Festival and the Jazz Fest, among others.
"If there was ever a signal that people needed to know whether New Orleans was back, this is it," Landrieu said.
Another component of the initiative will be strict enforcement of existing laws, from the ban on parking on sidewalks to hours of operation to responsibilities for cleaning up outside business establishments, the mayor said.
Kurt Weigle, president of the Downtown Development District, said the crowds of visitors will offer "a great opportunity to show the world how much we respect and love our hometown" and "to change our own hearts and minds about how we treat our city."
Landrieu also served notice that the clock is ticking on the Occupy NOLA encampment that's been established across from City Hall in Duncan Plaza.
"We think that we have been a great host to Occupy NOLA," he said. "They have been there in a peaceful way. But at some point in time, we've got to say 'Look, you've worn out your welcome.'
"At some point in time, it's going to get beyond just a First Amendment expression."
While Landrieu did not offer a timetable, he said the protesters likely will be asked to leave "sooner rather than later."
Frank Donze can be reached at or 504.826.3328.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Improved Roadways should get Painted Bike Lanes.

Quote from article below:
"With improved road surfaces, dedicated bike lanes and a wealth of resources for cyclists, the city that was once perceived of as blatantly antagonistic to riders now has a bike-friendly reputation nationwide."

So given the improved road surface on Earhart and Carrollton.... what's holding up PAINTING SOME BIKE LANES on Earhart & Carrollton... maybe even Leonidas..??? This seems a very EASY step to make.

If you want something to happen....
"The City Council has set a goal of attaining "gold" status by 2018."
You have to make a space for it!  Painting bike lanes does just that....

Six years ago, bicycling from Canal Street to Poland Avenue would have been a ride fraught with challenges, including dodging traffic and avoiding cavernous potholes. But in the years since Hurricane Katrina, conditions have improved so dramatically that bikers are turning out in record numbers -- so much so that New Orleans has been designated a bronze level "Bike Friendly City" by the League of American Bicyclists.
Local advocates say two prime factors have boosted the city's bike-friendly profile: the post-storm resurfacing of numerous roads, and the striping of several major roadways, including Marconi Drive, Crowder Boulevard, MacArthur Boulevard, St. Charles Avenue and Harrison Avenue.
Thanks to millions in disaster aid from the federal government, many miles of roads have been improved since 2005. The city footed the bill for adding bike lanes to the repaired roads, quadrupling its bike-lane mileage from 11 miles in 2005 to 44 miles today, with an additional 15 miles planned.
Studies conducted by Kathryn Parker of Tulane University's Prevention Research Center show that ridership along St. Claude Avenue increased by 57 percent after bike lanes were added in 2008. On South Carrollton Avenue, the number of cyclists jumped a whopping 225 percent after bike lanes were striped in 2010.
Richard Campanella began biking from his Bywater home to Tulane University, where he works as an urban geographer, nine years ago.
map-bikelanes2-110711.jpgView full size
"My decision then was largely pragmatic," he said. "It boiled down to an utter frustration with urban driving, jockeying in traffic and trying to fit a car through tight spaces."
Thirty thousand miles later, Campanella can testify to the fact that many more commuter cyclists are on the streets. Although road conditions are a key reason, there are other factors motivating bikers as well, he said.
"There is an increasing appreciation nationwide of a simpler lifestyle involving biking and walking," Campanella said. "There's a rising interest, especially among young people, in sustainability and concern about global warming. And there is also a recession and high gas prices."
In New Orleans, 18 percent of households in the city don't own a car, a statistic partly responsible for fact that New Orleans ranks sixth among like-sized cities in the percentage of workers who commute to work by bike, according to the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau's 2009 American Community Survey.
Bart Everson, who has been commuting to work by bike for eleven years, said he started doing it to save money, but soon became hooked by the "sheer pleasure" biking brings.
"I carry a camera with me and I stop to take photos of interesting things, things I would never see or be able to appreciate in a car, much less be able to stop for," he said.
Everson is a major force behind the effort to create a 3.1-mile bike path along the derelict Lafitte Corridor, which will connect the French Quarter to Canal Boulevard, linking seven neighborhoods along the way.
Whether cyclists are spurred by economics, philosophy, health goals, pleasure or frustration, they now have a bounty of resources available to them that didn't exist a few years ago.
If they need a place to "park" a bike downtown or elsewhere in the city, they can rely on as many as 69 bike racks installed by "Where Ya' Rack?" an initiative of the Young Leadership Council. If they need a map of dedicated bike routes and lanes, they can log on to the web site of the nonprofit Bike Easy and find one.
If they're curious about biking conditions on a favorite back street, they can access "Chain Gang," a detailed map of street conditions generated by NolaCycle from data collected by volunteers. If they need inexpensive parts to repair a bike, they can visit Plan B, a bike co-op in Faubourg Marigny.
And if they plan to ride to a local event but don't know where to safely stash a bike, Bike Easy provides "Bicycle Valet" service at some events -- such as the Oak Street Po-Boy Festival, Wednesdays at the Square and the Lafitte Corridor Hike -- where bikes are stored in secure "corrals."

With improved road surfaces, dedicated bike lanes and a wealth of resources for cyclists, the city that was once perceived of as blatantly antagonistic to riders now has a bike-friendly reputation nationwide. But bronze level recognition just isn't good enough for some: The City Council has set a goal of attaining "gold" status by 2018.