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New Orleans skylineThe Greater New Orleans Fair Housing Action Center promotes inclusive City planning, policies and procedures to ensure fair housing choice, zoning based on equitable access and opportunity, and works to increase the amount of housing stock accessible to all people, regardless of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, familial or marital status, or sexual orientation.

Transforming a Legacy: Proposals to Improve New Orleans Properties

The majority of New Orleans residents live in rental housing, making it the largest slice of our city’s housing stock.  Without taking on this subset of properties, we will never truly address neighborhood blight. If a community’s health, vitality, and prosperity can be measured by the condition of its properties, New Orleans may be poised to transform a legacy of substandard housing.

The City should regularly inspect rental units to ensure that owners maintain their properties in habitable, safe, and healthy conditions.  A proactive process is more effective than a complaint-driven process that relies on the City’s Office of Code Enforcement to respond and a minimal fee could provide funding and staffing for the program.

Proposition 4: Vote Yes to Keep New Orleanians in Our Homes

We all want our communities to be places where long-time residents can stay and thrive. In New Orleans, we attract 18 million visitors a year to benefit the state’s tourism economy, but those of us who maintain the culture and traditions we share with the world are being priced out of the city we’ve called home.

Legislators, business groups, and housing advocates agreed to put Prop. 4 on the ballot. If passed, it could reduce skyrocketing property tax assessments for New Orleans’ homeowners at risk of losing their homes. Prop. 4 would also benefit renters by allowing the City to offer tax relief to small landlords and homebuilders if they agree to rent their homes for affordable prices.

Slowing Gentrification and Preventing Displacement

Housing prices in New Orleans are increasing rapidly, threatening to price out many long-term residents who have made this city great for generations. There is no single policy solution to this problem, but the City and other public entities like the Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO) should use all the tools in the toolbox to ensure that everyone has a safe and affordable place to live. These tools include:

  • Making the best use of publicly owned properties in low-poverty neighborhoods.
  • Ensuring neighborhood investments promote equity rather than displacement.
  • Using zoning to incentivize affordability and integration.
  • Doubling the housing trust fund and using it for housing.
  • Implementing property tax relief programs for lower-income homeowners at risk of displacement.
  • Hold rental housing to basic health and safety standards.

Learn more about each of these policies here.

Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance (New Orleans Master Plan)

City policies, regulations, and land use decisions should promote fair housing choice and advance the ability of all New Orleanians to live in neighborhoods of opportunity.

The City’s recently updated Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance (CZO) includes significant steps toward these goals, including market-based incentives for developers to create housing for working families. Still, the City Planning Commission and City Council should embrace a full range of zoning policies to deepen this commitment to an integrated city based on choice and opportunity.