Mayor Nagin announces budget cuts
New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin has announced budget cuts he says are to the "bare bones." He said next year's budget approved by the City Council gave him no choice but to slash spending.
Mayor Nagin said City Hall and other offices will be closed on Fridays. Police will have to make do with the amount of fuel it used at levels set last year. City workers will be paying more money for reduced health care.
The council passed a budget this month that rejected Nagin's call for 12 unpaid furlough days for city workers. It cut funds to police and sanitation services and other departments. The budget passed unanimously, which Nagin said indicated a veto would be fruitless because it could be overridden.
People will see results of the budget cuts just after the new year. City Hall and other city buildings will be dark on Fridays, starting January 8, to cut energy bills.
And at Mardi Gras, there will be no viewing stands for parades and reduced clean-up. People arrested on a weekend will spend it in custody. Judges have cut out Saturday and holiday courts.