VCPORA Cancels Seven Point Plan Press Conference

New Orleans’ music community got wind earlier today that the Vieux Carre Property Owners, Residents and Associates (VCPORA) announced it would hold a press conference at City Hall tomorrow, June 18 at 11 a.m. with hopes of rallying neighborhood associations to support their proposed “Seven Essential Items to Make our Noise Ordinance work for New Orleans.”

Trumpet art

VCPORA press conference on the group's "Seven Point Plan" for New Orleans Noise Ordinance revision canceled.

The French Quarter-based VCPORA group has been active over recent months in taking measures to not only encourage strict law enforcement of live entertainment and noise ordinances in the city’s cultural district (virtually all of downtown and surrounding wards – a city-wide proposal), but has also begun executing an agenda to re-define present live music policies. A few neighborhood and business associations have signed on to the “Seven Point Plan” presented to them by the VCPORA.

However, several music community organizations comprised of artists, residents and business owners opposed to the “Seven Point Plan” responded within hours today with an action alert via their online networks, mailing lists and word-of-mouth streams. Local musicians and culture bearers were urged to attend the press conference at City Hall to make their voice heard. Those willing to show up, bear signs and represent the other side of this ongoing debate flooded communication portals confirming their attendance.

Then, just as swiftly as word about the press conference had spread, the VCPORA group posted an announcement late in the day today that they are canceling tomorrow’s press conference. It appears as if manipulating the relationships between neighborhood associations and City Hall is not a tactic that easily flies under the radar anymore. The VCPORA did not provide a reason for canceling tomorrow’s City Hall press conference on their “Seven Point Plan,” however it may be noted that New Orleanians opposed to this ordinance proposal were exponentially more visible on multiple communication outlets today than those in support of it.

View the VCPORA “Seven Point Plan” here.

For more information on this process, please visit the following resources:

Author’s Note: It should be noted that the City of New Orleans is presently undergoing an in-depth revision of the municipal Noise Ordinance, a process that allows all interested parties to contribute proposals and feedback. The VCPORA group is only one neighborhood or business association submitting ordinance proposals for this revision. Their proposed edits to the Noise Ordinance are what comprise the document commonly referred to as “The Seven Point Plan.” Those interested in shaping the new version of the official New Orleans Noise Ordinance should get involved now by familiarizing oneself with the various factors that inform the Noise Ordinance and then submitting proposed ordinance revisions.

  • Dan Morford

    If you live within the cultural districts of New Orleans, you already know, understand, and for the most part appreciate that live music and revelry is an integral part of the historic and cultural fabric in which you choose to make your home. Personally, I am envious and think those lucky enough to have this rich experience in their lives should consider their overall blessing. Sure it can be a bit loud at times, sometimes inconvenient even, but that is just an inherent part of the privilege. If you have recently moved into this area and find the regular music and revelry to be an irritant, then you have made a mistake and need to re-evaluate your decision. Someone, indeed many someone’s, myself included, will be happy to consider purchasing your little slice of cultural heaven. If you are considering a move to this area, evaluate the full experience and make an educated and accepting choice. It’s not for everyone and requires a certain spicy appreciation for life. Realize now and forever that living in the cultural districts of New Orleans is just another flavor of Gumbo. Even the contemplation of deconstructing, picking, choosing, manipulating any of the key ingredients, in this case the regular fluctuations in musical and revelry decibels, should be considered foolhardy at best.

    • Beadhead

      Yes, BUT, everyone needs to recognize that the French 4tr is a residential as well as commercial district and has been so since its inception. It is not unreasonable to expect that residential character to continue. Indeed, without it, the 4tr would not be the 4tr as we know it. There is simply no reason the clubs on Bourbon St need to have their doors wide open and music blasting out into the public street at all hours of the night and day. Tourists seeking those clubs’ forms of entertainment will find and patronize them, regardless. The reasonable sound level laws already on the books need to be enforced, so everyone can live together in some form of harmony. Of course, those on either extreme of the issue — the “no limits” crowd and the “no music” morons — will never be happy with a compromise, but compromise is exactly what is called for in a dense, mixed-use, urban environment. Let’s not lose sight of the need to maintain a reasonable, residential quality of life in the 4tr in our enthusiasm for our unique musical culture. Otherwise, the 4tr will be the less for it.

      • Dan Morford

        Thanks for the further qualification to my commentary. I agree with you entirely. What I think is required here however is less focus on “what can the government do for us”, and a return to community level dialogue and engagement toward finding that acceptable middle ground. To your point, the either/or argument is dead on arrival for all the objective reasons we both point out. All involved need to come to the table prepared to give and take or else this becomes a circular logic argument that will go on ad nauseum. This becomes more problematic with the increased “corporate ownership” of many of the chief offenders (exacerbated greatly post-Katrina). Yes, the sound level limitations already on the ordinance books needs to be enforced. But, more importantly neighbors, residential, business, individual and corporate, need to lay down their angst and armor (legal and otherwise) and sit down at the table together and begin an honest, committed dialogue for the best interests of all parties and sustaining the cultural diversity that makes New Orleans all that it is.

  • Mike Harvey

    The public does not understand exactly what these restrictions mean. I understand the VCPORA’s frustration with some of the extremely loud music blasting out of Bourbon Street clubs, however the extent of the restrictions they want to put in place would make it impossible for anything louder than an unplugged classical guitar to perform legally. People having a conversation on their front porch can register over 60 dB, which is one of their benchmarks, 55 being the lowest at night, 70 the highest permitted during the day. A lawnmower, or even a busy street of traffic is over 80 dB. Why should music clubs be restricted to lower levels than that? It’s up to all who understand the decibel scale to educate the public, the government, and the VCPORA membership about what this plan actually means. I don’t think 100% of the VCPORA membership is interested in killing the economic engine of this city… some of them own those night clubs… my guess is they weren’t consulted by their leadership about this proposal.