The 100 page document outlines reform measures and federal oversight to overhaul the NOPD.
It follows months of meetings and hearings aimed at making the force more effective while dealing with years of problems with brutality and corruption.
Shortly after taking office, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu invited the Justice Department to work with the city in developing reform plans.
However, the Mayor today said the $55 million dollar price tag of the consent decree could wreck the city's finances.
City attorneys today told the judge they would seek "relief" from the decree, meaning they may ask for a delay in implementation or seek to have the consent decree overturned.