Mitch Landrieu says commitment to New Orleans will keep him out of governor's race _lowres

Advocate staff file photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ -- New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu published an op-ed column on CNN’s website today in which he explains that the city’s top priority remains reducing its horrific murder rate.

The column is was the second in a series of five CNN commissioned from mayors who received “innovation grants” from Bloomberg Philanthropies. The first was by Memphis mayor A C Wharton; later this week, the website plans to publish columns by Louisville’s Greg Fischer, Atlanta’s Kasim Reed and Chicago’s Rahm Emanuel.

The Landrieu administration received a $3.7 million innovation grant from Bloomberg in 2011, and the first task the team took on was to try and come up with new ways of preventing murders, Landrieu writes. In the piece, the mayor says that most New Orleans murders are the result of petty disputes, and he touts the city’s progress in reducing the rate from 2012. But he acknowledges there is still a long way to go, and says the city is now turning its attention toward the problem of chronic unemployment for black men.