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Bill Capo / Eyewitness News
Email: bcapo@wwltv.com | Twitter: @billcapo

NEWORLEANS- Broken street lights drive New Orleans residents crazy. They call the Action Line, they call City Hall, they call council members.

'We have many burned out streetlights,' said Algiers Resident Wilfred Davis.

'On average we fix 50-60 streetlights every day, and since the beginning of the year we've fixed over 6,200 streetlight outages,' said Public Works Director Mark Jernigan.

But with four thousand street lights still broken, the city Public Works Director faced questions from frustrated Council members.

'4900 block of Franklin Avenue has been out since Katrina,' said District DCouncil Member Cynthia Hedge Morrell. 'since Katrina.'

'What do we tell out constituents?' asked District C Council Member Kristin Palmer. 'In the same vein they're complaining about lights, but then you said you can't turn the lights on.'

Morrell added, 'I don't know what to tell them now, other than hey they just won't fix your lights. Maybe you need to do a class action suit.'

Council members heard about the bureaucratic process and budget challenges, but wanted action. 'We don't need to diagnose the problem, we probably already know what that problem is,' said Morrell.

Missing street signs, another frustration, but the public works director blamed vandalism and promised to replace 3,000 street signs.

'We've also installed 833 new signs, new permanent signs,' said Jernigan.

Council members were delighted when the Public Works Director said he believes all the missing street signs can be replaced by the end of the year, and they told everybody to call 311 and report the missing signs in their neighborhood. But as far as street lights, that's a different and far more complicated issue, so they're scheduling another meeting in about a month.

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