Meeting Minutes

DeSaix Area Neighborhood Association (D.A.N.A)

March Meeting Minutes

January Bi-Monthly Meeting Minutes

Wayne Benjamin called meeting to order at 10:10 am.  Asked for nominations for Treasurer.  Cathy Boutte elected Treasurer.
3rd District NOPD Community Liaison Donna Hogan:
  • Crime stats for DeSaix area:  Four car burglaries reported on N. Salcedo, Castiglione, Crete and Derby Place.  Crimes committed by juveniles pulling on door handles.  Call NOPD if see juveniles or anyone pulling on door handles.  Police were able to get DNA from blood on seats of a car with smashed windows.
  • Neighbors urged to put items in trunk.  Do Not leave anything inside car and LOCK your car.
  • NOPD do not do car chases on a stolen car.  They use a TIGER Unit – a regular car that will follow a stolen car using crime cameras.
  • Passed out Hot Sheets: we will post on our web site.
  • Any problems contact at 504-658-6194 or email
Neighbor reported on a shooting that happened November 20th, 2018.  Six shots were fired in the area of Gentilly and Trafalgar.
Councilman District A Joseph Giarusso:
  • Continued discussion on car burglaries and juveniles pulling on car handles.  Main problem is judicial system; not holding repeat juvenile offenders.
  • Contact judges to let them know changes to system concerning juveniles are needed.
  • S&WB asked for rate increase on drainage.  Joe Giarusso asked us to vote on if we want a rate increase.  No one raised their hands and voted for it.  He said we matched Lakeview on vote.  If S&WB don’t get increase from citizens, Mayor’s office may try to get funding from tourism.
  • Spoke on meeting concerning short term rentals in residential areas.
  • Public works meeting on infrastructure funding and how will it be spent.  2.4 billion dedicated to street works:  4-5 million/year.
  • S&WB in arrears-10-20 million.  They need to collect money from that and they need to restore public trust.
  • S&WB have problems with estimated billing, incorrect billing and not enough resources to review billing.
  • Any problems contact Amanda Rizzo at 504-658-1002 and email
Neighbor reported on problem with sewage coming from Toast restaurant on Gentilly Blvd.  Smelly sewage from Toast flowing to her home at 1833 Gentilly Blvd.
State Representative District 97 Joe Bouie:
  • LA Department of Transportation is doing a study to see if they can eliminate the number of accidents in the area of Gentilly and Caton St. by blocking a median.  If number of accidents decrease, department will permanently eliminate median.
  • Upcoming legislative session there will be a vote on a bill for early education.
  • Neighbor brought up the problem of blighted housing in our area.  Senator Bishop addressed this concern.
State Senator Orleans Parish District 4 Wesley Bishop:
  • Blight is a problem all over the city.  In order to obtain a blighted house, you will need to wait 18 months to 3 years and purchase at a tax sale?  State legislature does not allow taking of houses – they want to allow individuals to keep their property.  Blighted housing bill came up for a vote and it failed, 58 to 42.  Senators from northern Louisiana voted this bill down.
  • To be addressed in upcoming legislature:  A raise in teacher pay.
  • Next legislative session starts April 8.  Bishop asked for ideas he can present as bills.  He can only bring 5 bills to session.  Contact him at 504-242-4198, 225-342-2040 or email:
  • Neighbor concerned about cracks in the DeSaix Bridge over Bayou St. John.  He said we need to check with the Secretary of State on that matter.
LSU Dental School representative Dr. Henry Gremillion:
  • LSU Dental School celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.
  • Construction of new parking lot in order to keep faculty, staff and student cars out of neighborhood.  LSU needs to add drainage.  The shell lot and Florida Ave flood maybe because of Bayou St. John.  Neighbor asked about using water permeable concrete.  Dr. Gremillion will get back to us on that question.
  • LSU construction on a new building, internal projects, mitigation from Katrina, repair on basement and 1st floor.
  • Service for oral surgery and clinical research were in basement before Katrina but moved up to 2nd floor (surgery) and 3rd floor (research).
  • Across the street is the dentistry and nurse practitioner clinic, urgent care and the emergency dental clinic.
  • Discussion of constructing limited housing for students in the future.
  • Current construction projects complete.
  • Call Dr. Gremillion at 504-619-8500(main campus) if have any problems.
FairGrounds RaceCourse and Slots Virgil Duplessis:
  • $5 general admission – this was for the
  • Go to for calendar of events:  Weiner dog racing at 12:30 on March 9, Starlite Racing on Fridays March 15, March 23. Last day of racing is March 24.
  • No update on extending slot times.  DANA is only neighborhood supporting extending slot times so far.
  • President advocating X amount of dollars for each neighborhood surrounding fairgrounds.  Not a done deal yet. This is there way of giving back to the community.
  • There is talk of bringing beignets and coffee to fairgrounds.
  • There are 2 fairgrounds patrol cars that are paid details:  NOPD 1 # 504-251-0276; NOPD 2 # 504-251-0111.  Fairgrounds control room # 504-948-1127.  NOPD Patrol borders: DeSaix Circle to Bayou, Moss to Ursuline, Broad to ST. Bernard, back to DeSaix.  Cars do not patrol across DeSaix Blvd in District D.
  • Virgil and fairgrounds donated desert and drinks for our pot luck.
New Orleans Mural Project chose the back of a garage/shed facing N. Lopez St. to do a mural.  They will match a local artist with this project.
Supreme Council of Louisiana Mason Meeting:  Ricardo Guiterrez only member of public in attendance.  The building will be on St. Bernard Ave.  The masons were scammed by the architect/contractor.  Proposed:  a public area out front, rent out commercial space on 1st floor; reception hall on 2nd floor; 3rd floor for masons and meetings.  Parking may be a problem.  They want to bring commerce back to neighborhood.  Need 1 more meeting with City Planning Commission.  The masons will start construction in 2020 if all goes to plan.
Neighbors in District D have mail delivery problems.  Some didn’t get mail delivered for 2 weeks.  Post Office contacted Internal Affairs about problem.  Important to report problems and contact online at  The help button will take you directly to file a complaint online where it can be tracked and logged.  Post Office is aware of problems with mail delivery.
Blighted Housing Update:  Reported houses in District D:  3519 Roger Williams, 3526 Roger Williams, 3533 Roger Williams, 3123 Yupon St., 113 Chalfant Pl., 124 Wilshire.  Reported houses in District A: 3212 Trafalgar, 3642 Trafalgar, 1899 Crete, 3208 Derby Pl.  Houses reported to Justin Hawkins in District D and Amanda Rizzo in District A.  To check on status of blighted houses go to:
Service Projects/Activities 2019:  3rd district NOPD Mardi Gras Breakfast, February 23; Crape Myrtle Tree Trimming, April 13; Ochsner Blood Drive and BBQ, June 8.
33 neighbors and guest speakers signed in.
November 10

DANA Community Meeting Notes (Click link below for PDF)

July 14 

Meeting called to by Hannah Ligon (President)

Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans (SWBNO)

Were not in attendance due to timing and requested information was not complete. Per Mr Jackson all answers to questions to be sent to D.A.N.A., by Friday, July 27, 2018.  Representatives from SWBNO will be in attendance at the September meeting.

Council-member Joe Giarrusso District A  Awarded D.A.N.A., $1000 from grant for security cameras

SWBNO meeting July 24th in City Council Chambers- billing concerns will be the major topic.

Residency needs to be lifted

Traffic cameras: discussion to take down all except those in school zones – funds from the traffic cameras are a part of the City’s budget.   Short term rentals

Council-member Jared Brossett District D

Awarded D.A.N.A. $2000 from grant for security cameras
Investigation taking place on the power outages happening in Districts D,E &A
Open rolls to challenge your assessment – Mid July – Mid August
Police overtime budget use is being discussed


  • LSU – what is going on?
  • What is being built? How much concrete being poured? Is drainage being taken into consideration with the work being done at the facility? Is LSU being good neighbors?
  • Who owns the land along the railroad tracks?
  • August service project: Saturday, August 11th @ 8:00 am – 11:00 am.  Meet at the DeSaix Circle Sign.

DeSaix Area Neighborhood Association (D.A.N.A.)

Bi-Monthly Meeting Minutes:

March 10

Meeting called to order by Wayne Benjamin, the President & Vice President had an important obligation to attend on this day.

Edible Schoolyard Event

Langston Hughes Academy will be hosting the Edible Schoolyard Garden event on March 22nd D.A.N.A., members can register online and use promo code DESAIX to received discounted tickets.  You must register by March 20th to receive the discount.

Thursday, March 22

Langston Hughes Academy

3519 Trafalgar St.

Patron Party at 6:00 pm

Main Party at 7:00 pm

April Outreach

Saturday, April 7th we will trim the trees along DeSaix , St. Bernard and various trees throughout the neighborhood.  We will also beautify the DeSaix Circle & paint the DeSaix Sign.

Bi-Monthly Meeting Minutes:

January 13

Meeting called to order by the President Hannah Ligon

Hannah made a short introduction that she was the incoming President for 2018.  She advised the months we do not have a meeting we will be doing a service project. We will send out an email with project to see who is interested in taking on one of the projects.

  • February: 3rd District Mardi Gras Breakfast
  • April: Tree Trimming
  • June: BBQ
  • August: Drain Cleaning / Trash Clean up
  • October: Night Out Against Crime & Senior Health Fair
  • December: Senior Care Basket

Carey Loshbaugh (Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots)

Carey gave an overview of himself and working at the Fair Grounds.  The Fair Grounds is interested in extending their hours on the weekends and holidays that fall on a week day. The organization took a vote and it was 15 in favor of the extended hours with 2 objections.  The dates of the extended hours have not been determined at this time but the extended hours will be 2 or 3 on the weekends.

Nothing has changed in reference to the Police patrol and parking will be contained as it is today.

Susan Guidry is neutral on the extended hours – she has not received complaints on activity at the Fair Grounds. She also wanted to know what the Fair Grounds is doing for the community.

Lt Contreras (3rd District Police)

Gave an overview of the crime in the 3rd District – there was an auto theft on Jan 2nd other than that crime is low.  She also spoke about the police taking on foot, bike & horseback patrols.  It was stated the 3rd District has about 8 officers that are trained for bike patrol and they have 3 bikes; if need be they would borrow bikes from another district.

Motion:  A motion was made by Cathy Boutte to purchase a bike for the 3rd District.  Motion made and approved by the body to purchase a bike for the 3rd District bike patrol with a budget of $1500.

Susan Guidry (Council-member District A)

Advised New York Times named New Orleans the number 1 place to visit in 2018.

You can look at to see the events taking place for the Tricentennial in 2018.

City Council meeting are being held at the School Board while the council chambers is being renovated.

Temporary detention center is back open – although things were not done correctly, it would have taken too long to make things right and the delay may have caused more jail space.

Power plant in New Orleans East – Entergy wants a smaller plant built which we will be paying for over the next 30 days; there will be an extra $5.30 in your bill.  Guidry has concerns with the Entergy proposal.  Stay aware!  1st voting Feb 21st @ 601 Poydras on the 11th floor at the Pan Am building.

AVO – needs an exterior camera facing the doorway, there are concerns of abuse of the system. This may be deferred to get the bugs out of the proposal.

S&WB: you can go online to see what pumps & turbines are working.  Billing system is a mess, contact S&WB if you have concerns with your bill and send an email to the council office making them aware.

False Alarm:  Council office looking into this matter

DANA General Meeting Minutes – 5/9/2015

City Council – District D, Jared Broussett

  • 10% police raise to all NOPD. More revenue through sales tax (Costco, Riverwalk, Walmart, etc)
  • Filed a Living Wage Bill, please send him any comments or questions
  • Street repairs
    • Get Robert Jackson from S&WB to talk about this
    • Also, Recovery Roads Program.
    • On Winthrop Pl, when S&WB came and installed a line on a line for a new house, they left a large hole.
  • Work on Wisner overpass will start in Sept — it will be closed and rerouted to St. Bernard, construction will begin for St. Bernard beforehand.
  • It was brought up that Desaix Bridge also has a large gap–it is not scheduled for repair at this time.
  • Update on Masonic Temple construction – Council member is not involved, but he thinking they are having issues with provisos.
  • Federal money has been allocated for work on LSU Dental school.
  • Is there something we can do to help get renovations for the 3rd District? Write the Chief of Capital Projects Vince Smith.
  • Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance – Provision about private development in the parks without public feedback. It was brought up that this could have impact on our neighborhood because of the festival grounds, and a request was made for this is be conditional. This will be voted on Thursday and Broussett plans to vote for it.

City Council – District A, Megan Langhoff for Susan Guidry

  • Lafitte Greenway — it is almost complete, there has been interest in development but there are provisions about density in the CZO
  • CZO — proposed amendments have been posted online
  • Jazz Fest — only 4 complaints in the office, it went well. Crowd was actually not as big as in 2001…
  • Old Home Depot development on Carrollton — CVS is the only confirmed tenant.
  • It was brought up that on Trafalgar there a couple of big potholes that are filled with water that need to be addressed
  • The issue of blowing grass on the street so that it goes down the drains is a problem. This is illegal and a request was made for it to be enforced.
  • How can we get a flashing school zone sign at the beginning of Trafalgar?

Mayor’s Office, Laura Mellem

  • Between Bienville and Orleans the street will narrow to 2 lanes in each direction. Repaving St. Louis between Broad and Claiborne.
  • Office of Neighborhood Engagement is hosting a workshop to explain the current online tools on June 23rd at 9am at Nix Library.
  • Call 311 whenever you have an issue and get the pace number

Crime Report – 3rd District, Christopher Prochaska

  • Speed trap in school zone, recently wrote 59 tickets in one day. If we ask, they will come out with the radar.
  • See attached crime map:
    • Zapp’s potato chips were stolen out of a trailer
    • Almost all the auto thefts took place before Jazz Fest
  • It was brought up that gunshots were heard on Desaix last week, Fairgrounds Patrol was called and responded immediately
  • NOPD is still short on manpower, but the new pay raise should get recruits in the door

Bayou Boogaloo – We didn’t get a volunteer to organize it last month, so we’re not going to have a booth again this year.

How can we get more participation?

  • Refreshments at meeting, make it more social
  • We need to have more activities than just meetings
  • Quarterly meetings (might drop attendance?)
  • Plan something with the One Hope church?
  • Passing out flyers is always helpful, but it is hard to get the flyers out.
  • Get the Fairgrounds to let us use space?
  • A BBQ?
  • A 10 year birthday party next year?
  • Maybe do flyers quarterly?

Crime Walk – Right now, there are scheduling problems, a May crime walk has been requested but no response. There will likely not be a crime walk in May.

Community Garden Update

  • Thanks to Mrs. Elaine Watters, we have a few vegetables to harvest.  We will meet at the community garden around noon today (May 9th ) to collect these fresh vegetables.  The committee will distribute these to the elderly (age 70 and over) in the DeSaix area.
  • Because the school will need the space where we now have the garden located, we have decided to discontinue the community garden project for now.  We will look for another location within the neighborhood and start up a new garden when this space is found.  This Saturday is also open garden day at LHA.  If you can help Amy please locate her in the garden area and she will find a job for you to do.

DANA General Meeting Minutes – 4/11/2015

New Orleans Public Library Millage Proposition Elections

  • May 2nd
  • During Jazz Fest. Parking will be an issue, but there will be early voting 4/18-4/25
  • Two measures, one of which has to do with the library … Because a lot of libraries were closed after Katrina, millage was cut back. As libraries reopened, no more money was allocated. If libraries don’t get more money, at least half of the library or half of the staff will be cut. If it does pass, it will allow them to be open more hours (6 or 7 days a week).

City council reports

  • District A (Megan Langhoff for Council Member Guidry)
    • Guidry supports both millage propositions. The other one will be used to maintain and operate the jail. This would do it without raising taxes
    • Smoke-free ordinance goes into effect. Fairgrounds counts in the same category as a bar or casino.
    • CZO will be discussed on Apr 17 at 9am. The time for anyone who’s interested for more public comment. The anticipate to adopt it this month. Website –
    • Lafitte Greenway is almost done.
  • District D (Lindsey Darnell for Council Member Brossett)
    • Consider inviting DPW to meeting to ask about parking permits
    • – allows you to see
    • Reconstruction of St. Bernard Ave meeting with DPW on Apr 15 at 6pm  at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral
    • Email if you ever have issues or questions

Laura Mellem with the Mayor’s office

  • There are proposed changes to the residential parking permits. At least part of our neighborhood will be affected.
  • There will be a meeting on April 22 at 6pm at Dominican High School.
  • Neighborhoods can opt out if a certain percentage of residents agree to it.
  • Maps can be found on Department of Public Works website –
  • Question about process of acquiring parking permits for organizations and individuals. Laura will send Wayne information.

Volleyball game – Fairgrounds Triangle forfeited, but it was a beautiful day and everyone had a good time. We’ll try again next year!

By-law Changes

  • Committee has met twice in the last month. Committee chair Clay reports:
  • In addition to changes, looking at things that we’re not doing.
  • Board needs to pass changes and then it will be brought to general membership

Spring Garden

  • We have a tomato.
  • We should be able to get water from the school soon.
  • If it doesn’t do well this year, we’ll try it again next year.
  • We’ll probably need to move our garden beds sometime next year because they’re planning a new building.

Hike for KaTREEna

  • Neighborhood beautification project
  • Trees distributed Apr 18 by 10am
  • Must be planted in front of home
  • Sign up today at meeting or email Pam at

Board membership

  • We are in need to new board members, but it is important you attend meetings regularly if you commit. Board meetings are open to all neighbors. Next board meeting is Apr. 29 at 6:30pm at Langston Hughes Academy.

Sunsets at the Bench will be starting up again on April 21 at 6pm. BYOB and a chair

Jazz Fest Triangles

  • Need volunteers to help pass out
  • 3 per household
  • If you are handing out flyers (or triangles), do not put any flyers inside of mailboxes (can be slid behind mailboxes, as long as it’s not in the mailboxes) because it’s a federal offense without postage.

Festival parking enforcement

  • Jazz Fest and Voodoo make this part of their plan, but it is a big problem for the other city park festivals that are getting bigger (Hogs for the Cause, for example).
  • Call 658-8100 — 24/7 parking enforcement report line

Bayou Boogaloo

  • May 15-17
  • We are looking for volunteers to have a booth at the festival again this year (we missed last year)
  • Sign up if you are interested

Jazz Fest Parking at Langston Hughes Academy

  • Our biggest fundraiser of the year — we need volunteers to help! It is the reason we don’t have to pay dues.
  • First Friday – April 24 starting at 9am
  • 2 shifts, early and late.
  • Pam is taking names at the meeting. Email Cathy at if you are interested. All you have to do is collect money for the school and direct people where to park. Wear your t-shirts if you volunteer.

ATVs riding around are a problem — no license plates, no headlights. One hit a neighbor at the Shell station on Paris. Police won’t chase them, because they could be liable if the ATV drivers get hurt. We should keep calling the police and bring it up at the NONPAC meeting.

We trying to schedule a Crime Walk for late May.


Fair Grounds Citizens Advisory Committee Meeting

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Meeting is called to order at 4:10 pm by Chairperson Bishop Warner.

Bishop Warner welcomed everyone and thanked them for their time and involvement in the Fair Grounds Citizens Advisory Committee. Thank you for your service.

Bishop Warner asked for a motion to approve the minutes from the last meeting held on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 and did everyone receive the minutes.

Tommy Lewis made the motion and Oliver Wise seconded to accept the minutes from the previous meeting.

Bishop Warner introduced Wayne Benjamin, the newest member of the committee who has been appointed by Councilperson Susan Guidry.

Old Business:

Eric Halstrom: Gave an update on the just completed thoroughbred race meet. There are 5 horses that ran in the Kentucky Derby representing the Fair Grounds and they finished 2,4,5 and 6th.

Infield Festival on Louisiana Derby day went off without a hitch and we had about 3,000 people who attended. By adding this Festival it is the only way we could grow this event is by using the infield.

Neighborhood Update:

Captain Scott brought in 3 reports which deal with the crime issues in the patrol area. The Fair Grounds patrol really helps to keep this area safer than non patrolled areas. Auto thefts top the list and Capt. Scott reminded everyone to please lock their doors.

Commander Thomas asked that if anyone sees a car being towed off and does not see the owner please call 911 and alert them.

Oliver Wise asked if there had been a pattern in the car thefts.

Commander Thomas usually it is not a pattern in the type of car. If anyone in the neighborhoods can help with solving crimes, please call crime-stoppers.

New Business:

Eric Halstrom: The Quarter Horse meet opens on Friday, August 16th and will end on Saturday, September 7th. Except for opening weekend we will be running Wednesday through Saturday’s.

With Jazz Fest over we are working on putting our grounds back together, Jazz Fest was enjoyed by all even with the rain of the second weekend.

Sandra Salmen: We wanted to let our neighbors know that on June 8th there will be a helicopter (small) landing in the infield bringing in a birthday boy. This will be a 7:45 pm the helicopter will not return to pick him up. A great way to arrive at your birthday party.

Bishop Warner informed the Committee the next meeting will be Tuesday, August 6, 2013 at 4:00 p.m.

Bishop Warner asked for a motion to adjourn. Sherry Watters made the motion and Tina Metoyer seconded the motion.

The meeting adjourned at 4:44 pm.