NOLA Mayoral candidates talk to FOX 8 about economic development, job creation plans

NOLA Mayoral candidates talk to FOX 8 about economic development, job creation plans

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The city has a certain vibe.

But some job seekers say its charisma aside it could use more employment opportunities.

According to data from the Louisiana Department of Labor, the jobless rate is New Orleans is down five-percent, 5.4 percent in August.

The nation's jobless rate is 4.1 percent.

FOX 8 asked the mayoral candidates what their pitch will be to businesses they want to attract to the city.

"One the pitch is that they will have criteria and guidelines that are clear, that are not tied to politics, it will not change on them in mid-stream once they have made a commitment to come invest their time and their resources in the city of New Orleans…Being open and honest about what it is we have to offer and once they take a chance on New Orleans then we're going to be a government that makes it easy to do business in our city," said LaToya Cantrell.

"We have a lot of opportunity here, there's a lot of space around. We've got Algiers that's looking for a stimulation, we've got New Orleans East and the Lower 9th Ward. I am going to let them know that first of all by the time I get there I got to start working on that crime right away, this is important, you know, I've got to be able to say that you're coming to a safe city. For us to ask companies to move here they're going to want to know that if they come here and bring their families that they're going to be in a safe environment," said Desiree Charbonnet."

GNO Inc., said the top five industries and their corresponding jobs in New Orleans are:

Full-Service Restaurants – 14,633

Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools – 11,625

Hotels (except Casino Hotels) and Motels – 9,361

Elementary and Secondary Schools – 8,776

Federal Government, Civilian, excluding Postal Service – 7,945

"We've got to make sure that City Hall is user-friendly and business friendly…so when I get there we're going to retrain everybody so that they understand that what we are trying to project is that we want to help you," Charbonnet said.

"We're going to change our culture from that whole spirit of no, telling you all the reasons why not, but one we were going to work it to advance growth and opportunity here by saying whatever it takes within the spirit of the law to have growth and development in our city that we will make it happen," Cantrell stated.

Both candidates support the idea of a $15-million wage.

And would they set benchmarks for their administration for job creation?

"Yes…in terms of jobs it depends on the industry first of all and how fast we can bring them here," said Charbonnet.

"I would look at setting benchmarks for growth and opportunity but that will come once we thoroughly analyze these organizations that have been funded and are in the line to receive public dollars to help spur economic development and growth in our city," said Cantrell.

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