New balcony 'air rights' rules celebrated - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

New balcony 'air rights' rules celebrated

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NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

After months of often bitter complaints, the Landrieu administration does an about-face on charging people for the air under their balconies.

The administration went to the City Council on Thursday to propose new rules that would waive air rights fees for architecturally significant balconies, galleries and overhangs

"What we are proposing is waiving the required fair market fees in exchange for continued maintenance," said New Orleans Deputy mayor Jeff Hebert.

"I want to express my gratitude to council member Head and the administration for listening to citizens who have maintained our neighborhoods," said Meg Lousteau with the Vieux Carre Property Owners' Association.

Some were facing fees as high as $20,000  a year.

The Landrieu administration now proposes a new ordinance in which fees would be waived for people who build balconies that are deemed architecturally or historically significant.

Some property owners who have already paid the fees could be eligible for refunds through the city's office of property management.

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