Walkout over, Orleans council at full strength

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - For the first time in more than a month, the New Orleans City Council will have enough members at a meeting to conduct business.

Council members Jon Johnson and Cynthia Hedge-Morrell walked out of a May 3 meeting and boycotted subsequent meetings. Their absences - plus an unfilled vacancy - meant the seven-member council couldn't muster the five members needed to conduct business.

The walkout occurred amid a dispute over a proposed city charter change and over selection of an interim district council member to fill a seat vacated when District B member Stacey Head was elected to a city-wide at-large seat.

With the council unable to act, the duty of filling the vacancy fell to Mayor Mitch Landrieu, who chose former state legislator Diana Bajoie.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)