Monday, November 13, 2006

John Young, Comedian or S*** Stirrer?

Or: Why You Should Read More Than the First Two Paragraphs of Metro Section Articles

At last week's joint meeting between the Jefferson Parish Council and the New Orleans City Council, John Young had some interesting money saving ideas:
Jefferson Council Chairman John Young said he thinks future collaboration should involve regionalizing services such as garbage pickup or public transit. Jefferson and New Orleans use the same company, Waste Management, but they have separate contracts. Two different agencies also run their bus systems.

"What would prevent Orleans and Jefferson from going to the table together with a company like Waste Management and negotiating a contract that covers both parishes, where we can use economies of scale to pass savings on to our constituents?" said Young, who organized the meeting with New Orleans City Council President Oliver Thomas as a first step toward greater cross-boundary cooperation.

The article didn't describe how that particular idea was received, but the mayor didn't seem too pleased with the overall direction of the meeting:
New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin grew impatient Wednesday with the lengthy orating, and he advised council members to focus their efforts on three core issues -- flood protection, federal housing assistance and crime. He then left abruptly, predicting the meeting could last 12 hours.

It lasted four hours -- less time than it takes to fly to Jamaica. I have no reason to think that Young was deliberately trying to get the mayor's goat, but it's a nice thought. Nor do I have any reason to think that Nagin's reaction was related to Young's suggestion -- "his smugness" has never needed an excuse to be rude. However, the two garbage contracts that the mayor has endorsed are going to campaign donors and the owner of at least one of the companies has well documented political connections.

Interesting that Jefferson Parish is flush with cash, but its leaders are interested in saving money on garbage collection. From what I've observed, there's more good will toward New Orleans in Jefferson Parish than I've ever been aware of. Good will might not be the correct term, maybe just concern over what will happen to Jefferson if New Orleans goes down the tubes. At any rate, Nagin can be as smug as he wants, but new Orleans needs the good will of Jefferson parish right now, at least of its legislative delegation. That Entergy bailout hasn't been approved yet.

Couple of other interesting articles over the weekend. One that I would file in the too little, too late department. It's nice to see the council getting serious, but the budget committee met with the mayor's CAO and CFO in late September to discuss the city pay raises. Rather than ask any of those questions, the committee members, with Willard-Lewis along for back-up, was satisfied with laughably incomplete information.

I house/dog sat in Metairie most of last week. I think the Metairie print edition overdid the abbreviation of a New Orleans story, although it's possible that I missed something. Couldn't figure out the first paragraph:
Some New Orleans City Council members have made it clear that they are not ready to sign off on a costly new approach to trash collection that Mayor Ray Nagin plans to launch Jan. 2. But with the current contractor set to exit as soon as its contract expires Jan. 1, council members learned Friday that -- short of shutting down collections -- they might have no choice but to accept the mayor's plan.

Couldn't see why they couldn't just bypass the mayor and extend the contract until I read:
Nagin said last week that because of delays in cementing the legal language of the citywide contracts, particularly with respect to the companies' bonding, the contracts had not been signed. At that time, he said the city was contemplating an extension of its agreement with Waste Management on a month-to-month basis, perhaps through February.

Waste Management officials said this week, however, that they aren't interested.

That's pretty serious, and I don't believe that's the whole story. Time to get serious about the recall effort. Might be a good idea to add Ed Murray, Austin Badon and Cedric Richmond to the recall list. Read the whole article and get very angry.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Old Favorites
  • Political Boxing (untitled)
  • Did Bush Take His Ball and Go Home
  • Teratogens and Plan B
  • Foghorn Leghorn Republicans
  • Quote of the Day
  • October's News(Dec.1)
  • untitled, Nov.19 (offshore revenue)
  • Remember Upton Sinclair
  • Oct. Liar of thr month
  • Jindal's True Colors
  • No bid contracts