The New Orleans City Council wisely voted to eliminate the residency law for the city’s police, firemen, and EMS workers. Forcing certain city workers to live within the city limits may, and I stress may, have been necessary when the city was floundering. But now that New Orleans is flourishing, the law seems unnecessary. I could understand how a city like Detroit or Flint, Michigan would want a residency rule. The sheer number of folks leaving those cities is astronomical. But when a city is booming like New Orleans is and the cost of living within the city limits is growing everyday, forcing certain city employees to live within the city limits seems counterproductive, especially amongst the ranks of the NOPD. New Orleans desperately needs police officers. Quality officers.
By eliminating the residency rule, the city opens up the recruitment process to hundreds of thousands of potential new candidates. Any good NOPD officer that works in New Orleans and lives in one of the city’s outer parishes is still a good NOPD officer, especially compared to a bad NOPD officer that happens to live within the city limits. Its about getting good cops on the force, regardless of where they reside. Yesterday, the New Orleans city council voted wisely by eliminating the residency law for the city’s police, firemen, and EMS workers.