Reason Foundation

Reason Foundation

Best Hope for New Orleans: Less Government

Leonard Gilroy
September 7, 2005, 2:39pm

Thomas Bray offers some interesting thoughts on post-Katrina governance in the New York Sun: I wholeheartedly endorse this sentiment in general, but I think Bray misses a chance to focus on the local barriers to opportunity and economic development, which in New Orleans have been considerable for as long as anyone can remember. Though the floodwaters have lain waste to the city, the local governance structure remains intact, which doesn't bode well for the type of radical changes the city will need to reestablish itself. There is some reason for hope, however, as Mayor Nagin -- despite the abundance of criticism heaped upon his shoulders due to the city's inadequate preparedness -- comes from a business background (former cable executive) and was elected on a platform of reducing regulatory barriers to economic development and routing out corrupt elements in city hall. It could be that the current disaster will offer his adminstration far wider latitude for reinventing city government than was feasible before. But it will be a long road from here to there.

Leonard Gilroy is Director of Government Reform

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