New Orleans, LA – Mayor Landrieu says the budget he's delivered to the City Council will not require furloughs or major layoffs. And he's not asking for property tax hikes.
"Everything's going to stay the same. We're going to stay the course."
Landrieu says the police department will not be cut. Ranks will have 1,353 sworn officers. Superintendent Ronal Serpas says in a perfect world he'd like a few hundred more, but that number will work.
"A recent survey of 400 police departments in America was conducted - 85 percent of those departments have had to slash their budgets, with nearly half of them having to lay off people and furlough people. For the people of New Orleans this is an encouraging day that we're maintaining the staff that we have. We continue to drill for greater efficiencies."
The mayor says one-quarter of the budget is tied to pension programs, health care and debt repayment. He says most city departments will have spending cuts.
The City Council begins budget hearings next week.
For WWNO, I'm Eileen Fleming.