Gentilly Terrace neighborhood discussed short term rentals, street lighting
New Orleans District D Councilmember Jared Brossett attended this month’s Gentilly Terrace and Gardens neighborhood meeting, where he primarily addressed the City Planning Commission reviewing the idea of legalizing short term rentals and to ask members to take a vote on the issue within their group.
Prior to Brossett engaging the community, a resident voiced their concern with inadequate street lighting on the 4600 block of Painters, where a reported shooting took place in front their house last weekend.
The Gentilly Terrace and Gardens Improvement Association met this Wednesday, July 20 in the cafeteria at the Gentilly Terrace Charter School, located at 4720 Painters Street.
Hank Carroll, resident in Gentilly for at least 20 years, said there was a shooting outside his house during the night last weekend on the 4600 block of Painters.
“It might be a good idea to start leaving your lights on,” said Carroll.
Carroll said he notices the city frequently replace street light bulbs that burn out, but he suggests they use newer, brighter, LED bulbs. “Crime’s going everywhere, but let’s at least light it up.”
His wife Chris Carroll said they’re looking to employ street lights that light up like the one on the corner of Painters and Lombard. In 2014, the City of New Orleans received over $14 million from Entergy Savings that went towards installing new LED lights.
Councilmember Brosset assured the Carrolls of getting their street light looked into, before he spoke in front the Gentilly Terrace neighborhood at length about the short term rentals issue. After Mayor Mitch Landrieu deferred the issue in June, the City Planning Commission will further review proposed regulations to short term rentals and present their findings to City Council at yet to be determined date.
The City Planning Commission originally voted against legalizing one of four types of short term rentals, “principal residential” rentals which rent out an entire home for rotating vacation use through specific permission with City Council and are limited to two to each block face.
Brossett explained how he’s not in favor of short term rentals and is concerned about commercialization and potentially damaging the integrity of neighborhoods.
“My big issue is why are we talking about short term rentals when we have an affordable housing issue in this city,” Brossett said.
Mr. Carroll questioned how well enforced the law will be, if City Council, who has the ultimate say, does decides that short term rentals remain illegal.
Brossett said that he has requested that City Planning give him information and an impact statement on affordable housing, similar to a fiscal note, listing revenues and expenditures on affordable housing and how it correlates with potential short term rental regulation.
Cate Newton, President of Gentilly Terrace and Gardens Improvement Association, told members at the meeting to speak up if they’re aware of short term rental violations, as any whole house non-owner occupancy is illegal under 30 days.