New Orleans Mayoral Candidates participate in final televised debate

Latoya Cantrell and Desire Charbonnet discussed crime, affordable housing and the state of the Sewerage & Water Board in their final televised debate on WWL-TV.

NEW ORLEANS -- In a mayoral debate on WWL-TV, LaToya Cantrell and Desiree Charbonnet gave their final push to voters. 

"I have walked that talk, I have listened. I have had the ability to build consensus and every step of the way, deliver results," Cantrell said. 

"Think about who is going to represent you here in the city of New Orleans. Think about who is going to represent you nationally," Charbonnet said. 

The debate started off with a video from our WWL-TV Special Report: Down the Drain. 

WWL-TV anchor and moderator Thanh Troung asked the candidates what their steps would be to reform the Sewerage and Water Board if they are elected mayor. 

"We need built in accountability. We need to ensure that there's not only effective leadership but the ability to empower...those who are in the trenches," Cantrell said. 

"The Director of Sewerage and Water Board will be a licensed professional engineer! The position requires that and it should've always required that," Charbonnet said. 

The candidates also talked about their vision for making housing affordable and short-term rentals. 

"One, we hold those accountable that have received subsidies and  are not adhering to the laws that they're suppose to be compliance to," Cantrell said.

"The more short-term rentals take over our neighborhoods. We lose our character. This is not California," Charbonnet said. 

Cantrell and Charbonnet also discussed their plan for reducing crime and recruiting officers for the New Orleans Police Department. 

"Do you have any specific steps that you would put in place to get more officers, new officers, into the force?" Troung asked.

Well one is setting the tone that we have a healthy environment. Currently the morale is in the toilet," Cantrell replied. 

"One way would be to advertise as a seek out people outside of New Orleans. We are a region. We need to start thinking regionally," Charbonnet said.

With the final televised debate in the books, Political Analyst Clancy DuBos says each candidate will spend the next 48 hours hitting the streets with last minute pushes to voters. 

"I think they both came out of it pretty much the way they came into it." Now it's about following up on that voter ID and actually reminding their voters that saturday's election day..don't forget to vote," DuBos said.

© 2017 WWL-TV


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