Mayor Ray Nagin has a proposal that will allow residents to move back to any part of the city but some areas may not receive some city services. This idea may have some legs. Although some residents in the affected areas will probably object, their anger could be alleviated if those residents were not required to pay for services not provided.
Mayor Ray Nagin said he will allow people to rebuild in any part of the city that they wish to rebuild in but he wonâ€™t guarantee the level of services that will be available to the hardest hit areas in the short term.The simple solution for this is for the city to unincorporate those areas it chooses not to provide services for. Instead, minimal services in unincorporated areas will be provided by the parish.
This would prove no small undertaking as currently the entire parish is incorporated and thus would require changes to the city charter. For one, a new parish council will have to be created along with a parish president. Or, it could copy Baton Rouge's government blueprint and create a city-parish government. There the council and mayor both govern the entire parish as well as the city itself while still allowing unincorporated areas and other cities inside the parish. It works well there, no reason it couldn't work here.
One neighborhood which might favor this concept is Lakeview. Long a conversative Republican island in a liberal Democrat sea, Lakeview has until Hurricane Katrina been one of the city's major sources of revenue yet has seen most of their taxes gone to people the residents view as non-contributors to the welfare of the city. The thought of seceding from New Orleans has been bounced around for a number of years and this just might be their chance to carry through with it. Question is, will New Orleans be willing to give up that neighborhood.
Hat tip: Louisiana Libertarian
UPDATE: City Comforts has some thoughts.