[News] New Orleans Whats at Stake - Statement from the Coalition to Stop Demolition + Updates

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Fri Nov 30 11:09:28 EST 2007


From: "K W" <kaliakuno at gmail.com>


Dear comrades,

In the past two years, New Orleans has faced a 
series of social crises that have struck a blow 
to our collective vision for a more just and 
equitable city, not simply one that is more 
inviting to elites. Yet none of these crises has 
been so uniquely urgent as this. What is at stake 
with the demolition of public housing in New 
Orleans is more than just the loss of housing 
units: it destroys any possibility for affordable 
housing in New Orleans for the foreseeable 
future. Without access to affordable housing, 
thousands of working class New Orleanians will be 
denied their human right to return.

Although this situation is unique and urgent in 
the city of New Orleans, it does not occur in 
isolation. The plans for redevelopment here are 
part of a national assault on public housing, in 
which tens of thousands of homes have been demolished in the past decade.

Though we face this ongoing crisis together 
across this country, in New Orleans the prospect 
of demolition is a critical moment for the 
reconstruction movement itself. It is a test of 
the strength and will of our movement: a loss at 
this juncture would be a blow to the ability of 
the movement to grow and sustain itself to fight on other fronts.

In coming to New Orleans, you are helping us to 
draw this line in the sand. You are taking part 
in a critical piece of the ongoing fight against 
neo-liberal incursions into our cities. Here in 
New Orleans, as the bulldozers arrive to destroy 
any hope for the right of return for thousands of 
families, you can help us push back this agenda, 
and stand fast with us to promote a more 
people-focused reconstruction: one that is based 
on a vision of justice and rights for all people, 
and not profits for corporations and the desires of those with power.

We stand for a reconstruction that values and 
preserves services and infrastructure for poor 
people who have always lived, worked, and 
struggled to survive in New Orleans, and who 
possess the right to return to the homes from 
which they fled or were forcibly removed more than two years ago.

Thank you for making the pledge to stand with us 
at this time. May the love of justice, not power, guide our actions.

In Unity and Struggle,

The Coalition to Stop Demolition

------------ --------- --------- --------- -------
Please spread the word to news organizations:

Press Conference

Calling on City Council to Oppose Demolition of 
Public Housing and Supporting Right to Return

Contact:  Pam Nath - 419.358.4464  or Kali Akuno 510.593.3956

Where: Outside City Hall - Steps of City Hall
When:  9:30am, Friday, 11-30-07

Who: Residents from Public Housing and Allies

Request for City Council to Oppose Public Housing 
Demolition & Support Right to Return


Organizations supporting:

Churches Supporting Churches
Advocates for Environmental Human Rights
Peoples Institute for Survival and Beyond
Common Ground
Peoples Hurricane Relief Fund
Mennonite Central Committee
Louisiana Justice Institute
C3
and several others!

------------ --------- --------- --------- ------
Demolition Update 11-29-07


Louisiana Housing Finance Agency has reserved $35 
million in tax credits for HANO to "rehabilitate" 
six public housing buildings – making up 1949 
units.  This is an extension of the tax credit 
arrangement between HANO and the LHFA on St. 
Bernard I, BW Cooper, Lafitte, CJPeete I/III and 
Fisher.  The extension is subject to the 
following conditions: including: 1) HANO provides 
written confirmation to LHFA no later than Dec. 
18 that demolition has begun on the six properties
.
            Source: Daily Journal of Commerce, November 27, 2007 .
             http://www.djcgulfc oast.com /pdf/nov27.pdf


HUD November 16, 2007 Letter to Senator Landrieu – Attachment 7
            Demolition of St. Bernard December 15, 2007
                                    BW Cooper I  December 15, 2007
                                    Lafitte – December 17, 2007
                                    CJ Peete III – December 15, 2007
                                    Fisher – December 15, 2007


HANO Board Meeting – November 29, 2007
            Approval of demolition services 
contract with Keith B. Key Enterprises up to 
$6,000,000 to be paid from HANO capital funds to 
provide for demolition and removal of all 
remaining buildings on the BW Cooper Site in 
advance of final negotiation of terms and 
execution of a Master Development Agreement in 
order to permit timely progress of redevelopment activities.
            Approval of demolition services 
contract with St. Bernard Redevelopment in amount 
not to exceed $9,008,670 to be paid from HANO 
capital funds for demolition and removal of all 
remaining buildings on St. Bernard site
 in 
advance of final negotiation of terms and 
execution of a Master Development Agreement in 
order to permit timely progress of redevelopment activities.
            Approval of demolition services 
contract with Central City Partners in amount not 
to exceed $5,830,000 to be paid from HANO capital 
funds for demolition and removal of all remaining 
buildings on CJ Peete site
 in advance of final 
negotiation of terms and execution of a Master 
Development Agreement in order to permit timely 
progress of redevelopment activities.
            Award $2,526,116.10 to D.H.Griffon of 
Texas, Inc, to provide for the demolition of 70 
buildings and associated infrastructure at the Lafitte Development.
            Approval of loan of funds from HANO 
not to exceed $645,000 to St. Bernard I, LLC to 
pay for certain predevelopment expenses to facilitate the Project

            Ratifying the execution of the 
Predevelopment Loan Agreement and related 
documents by the Executive Director for purposes 
of loaning funds in the total amount not to 
exceed $955,000 to Keith B. Key Enterprises to 
pay for certain predevelopment expenses.

------------ --------- --------- --------- ---------
HANO approves $30 million in demolition contracts
Posted by The Times-Picayune November 29, 2007 10:24AM
Categories: Breaking News
By Gwen Filosa
Staff writer

The Housing Authority of New Orleans on Thursday
approved more than $30 million in contracts for
citywide demolition of vacant brick buildings at five
developments, part of its sweeping plan to transform
New Orleans public housing.

Demolition will begin Dec. 15, said HANO spokesman
Adonis Expose, but no specific plans were announced
Thursday.

HUD announced in June that it would demolish the
city's four largest developments, St. Bernard,
Lafitte, C.J. Peete and B.W. Cooper to make way for
"mixed income" neighborhoods.

HANO board commissioner Donald Babers approved the
following demolition plans Thursday, without a word of
comment from the 20 people who attended the meeting in
Algiers:

-- $9 million for the demolition of 132 buildings at
the vacant St. Bernard development, in agreement to
St. Bernard Redevelopment.

-- $6 million for demolition of vacant buildings at
the B.W. Cooper, in agreement with Keith B. Key
Enterprises. HANO also awarded an additional $955,000
to Keith B. Key for "certain predevelopment expenses."

-- $5.8 million for the demolition of 55 buildings at
the vacant C.J. Peete, in an agreement with Central
City Partners.

-- $2.5 million for the demolition of 70 vacant
buildings at the Lafitte, awarded to D.H. Griffon of
Texas, Inc.

-- $6.3 million for the demolition of buildings and
the construction of streets, lighting and other
utility infrastructure at the Fischer, to support new
home construction, awarded to Boh Brothers Construction.




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