NEW ORLEANS - In the latest salvo in the battle over running and financing the consent decree for the Orleans Parish Prison, the city has filed to have the prison placed in federal receivership for all administrative, correctional and financial aspects.
The city said the move comes after a week of testimony and video releases that detailed poor management and oversight of the facility. The shocking video showed inmates brandishing a weapon, using drugs and drinking beer inside the now-closed House of Detention.
Sheriff Marlin Gusman said the conditions were no surprise given the lack of money and maintenance for the sprawling facility.
Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the city fired back with the receivership move.
“It gets clearer every day that the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office is not keeping the prison secure and our city safe," said Landrieu. This is about management, not money. Last week, expert after expert talked about mismanagement and said this was one of the worst run jails in the country. That is why I am asking for receivership so a corrections expert can run the jail in a safe, secure and fiscally responsible way.”
The city's news release said that in receivership, the position of sheriff remains filled, but all administrative, correctional and financial aspects of the operations of Orleans Parish Prison would be made by a court-appointed corrections expert.
Landrieu has been decrying the cost of the consent decrees for the jail and NOPD reform and the cost of paying into a pension for firefighters, costs he says would severely impact city services.