One-on-one with Latoya Cantrell

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NEW ORLEANS -- With Election Day just a few short days away, News with a Twist got the chance to sit down with the two candidates in the race for New Orleans mayor.

Tuesday, we sat down with former Judge Desiree Charbonnet, and today we talk to City Councilwoman Latoya Cantrell. Here's what Cantrell had to say in her interview with LBJ:

LBJ: We start out with talking about the NOPD. Under your administration, what would be the biggest change you make on how we execute public safety?
Cantrell: The biggest change, ultimately, would to be how we listen to our officers, more connected to the ground, doing the work.

LBJ: The Sewerage and Water Board has been one of the big ones in the last year, but in the fairly recent history, with both streets and Sewerage and Water Board under the same umbrella, you think that was a good idea?
Cantrell: The biggest issue in regards to this is inter-agency coordination and collaboration, as well as having effective management and leadership, core competencies and skill sets aligned with what needs to get done.

LBJ: Do you have a plan to address some of the systemic issues? We are told we want to arrest our way out of violent crime. What is your plan to address some of the systemic problems?
Cantrell: Now I do believe we have to take a holistic approach, and I've also been quoted as saying, "Hey, nothing stops a bullet like a job."
We're gonna play to the strengths of the organizations that are getting results, touching more children, but they're getting zero dollars, or minimum, from the city.

LBJ: One of our popular features on the show is Pothole of the Day, and everybody's got one. What's your plan?
Cantrell: Oh maintenance fund, infrastructure fund, that has to be created. We will work with our state delegation as well, and the business community and hospitality community collectively, because we are going to have to come up with a fair share that the city does receive in order to invest in ourselves and be sustainable.

LBJ: Statues. Where do you take that at this point?
Cantrell: Well what i believe is that I'm bottom up. When people should be able to determine their public spaces and what reflects of them and our values, and so our approach now I would say is engaging the community. That's what I would do to ensure that, uh, these public spaces are built and filled with something we can all be proud of.

The New Orleans mayoral election is Saturday, November 18. Click here to find your polling place.

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