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Halo 01-11-2003 12:14 AM

French Quarter Mules to Wear Diapers
Drivers to pay if mules aren't diapered :hallucine:

Ordinance seeks cleaner Quarter


By Frank Donze and Bruce Eggler
Staff writers/The Times-Picayune

New Orleans carriage drivers who fail to equip their mules with cloth bags to catch the animals' droppings will face fines and possible suspension of their operating permits under an ordinance that won unanimous approval Thursday from the City Council.

The ordinance spelling out the restrictions was sponsored by Councilwoman Jacquelyn Brechtel Clarkson, whose district includes the French Quarter, where the city's four carriage companies do most of their business.

Although some carriage drivers have long voluntarily put "diapers" on their mules before they leave the stables, Clarkson has said a law is needed to address the unsanitary conditions caused by droppings other animals leave on the streets of the city's premier tourist destination.

The plan, which was debated and endorsed last month by the council's Ground Transportation Committee, was approved Thursday with little discussion.

First offenders under the new ordinance will face a $50 fine. The penalty will double for a second violation.

A third offense will carry a $200 penalty and a minimum five-day suspension of the driver's operating permit. A subsequent violation within one year of the first offense will result in a $200 fine and suspension for up to 30 days.

The ordinance also makes drivers responsible for keeping the diapers in "working order" and for keeping carriage staging areas "in a sanitary condition."

Drivers will be required to summon company representatives to the scene immediately if a diaper fails to catch any droppings.

Carriage company owners, who said they often are blamed unfairly for droppings left by police horses and other animals not under their control, successfully lobbied the council to place the enforcement burden on the drivers rather than the companies.

Gideon Stanton, an attorney for Royal Carriages, told the council Thursday that the companies are satisfied with the final version of the ordinance.

Accepting the argument that most drivers have cell phones, the council deleted a requirement that each carriage be equipped with a two-way communications system.

Eliminating animal droppings from the streets of the Vieux Carre is part of a larger campaign by Clarkson to clean up the historic neighborhood.

Among her other initiatives are encouraging French Quarter property owners to obey an ordinance requiring them to clean their sidewalks, asking police to aggressively round up unattended youngsters after curfew, adding 130 trash containers in the district, and using crews of Parish Prison inmates to clean the Quarter's 500 storm drains, which often are clogged with cups, paper and other trash.

pakowitz 01-31-2003 01:07 AM

French Quarter Mules to Wear Diapers
lmao, dat was funny as hell, u wild dude, oh damn
i havent laughed like that in a month, thanx gator i really needed that

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