New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said Tuesday afternoon that Public Works Director Mark Jernigan will resign, and he will call a meeting to recommend firing Sewerage & Water Board General Superintendent Joe Becker and communications director Lisa Martin because he is unhappy with the information that was provided to the public about the widespread flooding in the city Saturday.
S&WB Director Cedric Grant announced earlier Tuesday that he's retiring in the fall.
Jernigan's retirement will be effective Aug. 18; he will be replaced on an interim basis by Dani Galloway, Grant's chief of staff.
The fallout comes after a special City Council hearing Tuesday at which officials acknowledged that 14 of the 121 pumps in New Orleans were inactive during Saturday's flooding. Officials initially had said the system was working to capacity, then acknowledged that seven pumps were out of service, a number they revised Monday to eight.
"It's inaccurate to suggest the system was operating at its maximum abilities. This was not true and this is unacceptable," Landrieu said.
The rash of firings and resignations is unusual for what has been a relatively stable executive team over Landrieu's first seven-plus years in office.