Local businessman Troy Henry, who lost his first bid for mayor in 2010 against Mitch Landrieu, is again vying for the post because he says the city’s next mayor needs a “certain level of depth and experience that he hasn’t seen in other candidates” and because many of the problems that pushed him to run nearly eight years ago are still widespread.
“The ills of our city still exist today. Poverty and crime are still pervasive,” Henry says. “A lot of the things I ran on 8 years ago still exist today. More importantly, I’m running because I don’t want my city to continue to be what I call a “settle for” city—a city where you settle for the roads and the crime and unemployment. I want to change the trajectory of our city. I have kids and I would like for my kids to not have to go out of town to be gainfully employed or to be safe. Those are…the reasons why I’m running for mayor. Because I believe I’m the only candidate that has the ability to truly transform the city of New Orleans.”
Henry says he want to see New Orleans reach its fullest potential.
“When I was a kid, Atlanta, Houston and New Orleans were all peer cities. Now, I was talking to the economic development head a couple weeks ago and he was telling me our new peers are Birmingham, Savannah, Baton Rouge and Memphis. So we’ve had steady decline and I don’t want to see us continue. My plans are all about growth; all about creating a dynamic city.”
Public safety is also a top issue for Henry, whose strategy for reducing crime will include:
Ensuring that NOPD engages in community policing, that officers have access to technology and are implementing best practices;
Economic and job growth achieved by aggressively recruiting Fortune 1000 companies to relocate to New Orleans and offer high-wage jobs;
Advocating for an increase in the minimum wage so that “full-time workers are not bringing home poverty-level paychecks; and
Working to heal the racial divide in New Orleans.
Henry adds, “We will aggressively pursue non-violent offenders and take them off the streets. We will immediately form a strategic alliance with other state-certified law enforcement organizations to increase our physical presence in our neighborhoods. We will work with the D.A. on smarter sentencing, bail and prevention.”
Henry also has plans to reform the Sewerage and Water Board and enhance the city’s infrastructure across the board.
“New Orleans can’t be a first-class city with Third World infrastructure,” he says. We have to think bigger and plan smarter for our long-time future.”
Editor’s note: Due to space constraints, The New Orleans Tribune limited the number of mayoral candidates profiled in its print issue. The candidates chosen were selected based on their showing in a poll conducted in early September by Market Research Insight. Video interviews of mayoral candidates Tommie Vassel and Frank Scurlock are available on The New Orleans Tribune’s Facebook page.