The New Orleans City Council postponed both of its January meetings by one week due to the ongoing recovery from a December cyberattack, Councilwoman Helena Moreno said on Monday.
The meetings that were scheduled for Jan. 9 and Jan. 23 will instead be held on Jan. 16 and Jan. 30, respectively.
“We are delaying our regular meetings this month by one week to help give staff more time to prepare material and documents in order to give the public the council meeting they expect,” Moreno said in an emailed statement.
The attack, which occurred on Dec. 13, affected more than 4,000 of the city’s computers and devices, including the city council’s, and severely disrupted the city’s ability to conduct business over the internet and phone.
The attack is under investigation.
By Dec. 23, half of the city’s computers were re-imaged partly due to the assistance of nearly 90 volunteers helping the Information Technology and Innovation team in the response effort, said Mayor LaToya Cantrell.
About 15 percent of devices that were affected were deemed damaged and put aside, Cantrell said.
Cantrell estimated the recovery at $792,000, which doesn’t include the cost of replacing some equipment, adding that the total cost may double.
Little by little, nola.gov is coming back online, although access to critical documents and information is still limited for many city departments, boards and agencies, Moreno said.
The City Council will meet briefly on Thursday morning in a special meeting to amend the official calendar and put land use and other legal deadlines on hold due to the “ongoing state of emergency,” Moreno said.
Residents can still make 3-1-1 requests for service; pay sales, use, and parking taxes; and pay parking and camera tickets.
Council offices are open for regular business this week, although access to official emails and documents may be limited, Moreno added.
Regular phone numbers and temporary email addresses have been posted on nola.gov for all council-related inquiries.