New Orleans City Government
Twenty Years Ago


May 1979

In May 1979, Hall Talk celebrated its eighth year in publication by breaking its tradition of featuring a photo of City Hall on its anniversary covers and beginning a new tradition of highlighting various other city-owned public buildings. On this cover is the grand daddy of them all--Gallier Hall, which served as the seat of municipal goverment for more than 100 years. Twenty years ago, Gallier Hall was being used as office space for various city agencies and for a number of semi-public agencies. The venerable old building, Hall Talk admitted, was "a bit on the shabby side." But the city had just received federal funds, partially matched by Community Development monies, to renovate the interior of the building. The city's additional plans to make Gallier Hall into a ceremonial and reception hall were successfully carried out during the next few years.


Once again we present below a sample of other City Government happenings that were reported in Hall Talk twenty years ago.


In the Memo: From the Mayor column, Mayor Dutch Morial thanked city employees for their "excellent service" during his first year in office. He also commented on the number of CBD workers enjoying Duncan Plaza during their lunch hours and reminded city workers to help keep the park litter free.

The Hall Talk Asks column visited Manpower's Bureau of Monitoring and asked "Who's your favorite T.V. Weatherman?" Nash Roberts got two of the nine votes, Al Duckworth got two, Dallas Raines got one, and Bob Breck won the poll, with three votes (one respondent didn't have a preference). All of the Breck fans liked his sense of humor and his attire: " How does he keep his hair so slick and shiny," Ursula Morgan asked. Marilyn Dixon said, "His weather scene is colorful. His clothes are bright and colorful, too." And Laverne Dunn said, "He dresses real loud, and I think he does it on purpose."

The Out to Lunch column featured two restaurants in Le Pavillon Hotel, at 833 Royal Street, and recommended the $5.50 daily lunch buffet in the Le Centime restaurant and the sandwiches (and sumptuous decor) in the Cafe Trianon.

The Civil Service Commission announced that a new method of computing annual and sick leave for city employees had gone into effect--what we city employees know as the "old plan" (for employees on the payroll as of December 31, 1978) and the "new plan" (for employees hired after December 31, 1978).

Administrative Analyst Sharon Robinson (CAO) was pictured checking the propeller of a Cessna-152 for birds and debris as she began to fulfill a lifelong dream of getting her private pilot's license. The CAO's Office named her its first "Bachelor Girl of the Month," dubbing her "that daring, intrepid, Black Baroness of the eastern airways."

The May issue featured photographs highlighting Mayor Morial's first twelve months in office, including the introduction of RAMS (Resource Allocation Management System), the city's new payroll system; the purchase of 185 new city buses; the creation of the Office of Community Development; and a massive program to repair the city's public buildings.


Revisit:
January, 1979
February, 1979
March, 1979
April, 1979

The Louisiana Division of the Library has a complete set
of Hall Talk in its City Documents Collection.
Come by and read about the past some time!


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