Well, for whatever it's worth, I am from New Orleans, and can assure you that the "port" has been back up and running for quite some time. In fact, within a month or so from the storm's landfall, those docks were loading and unloading. As to cruise lines originating here, that may well be something which will have taken much more time.
As to the area being remotely what it once was; only those of us who have known the Big Easy and called it "home" for generations can appreciate the difference. It is very true that in the French Quarter, you will find that business is indeed well back on the way to "as usual," however even there you will find many establishments still boarded up and/or no longer in operation. As to driving up Canal street, one need only go to the limits of the Quarter itself (actually not even that far) to see many reminders of how "not" back to normal the city is. Many of Canal St. establishments are still closed, the once striking marquee of the Saenger Theatre looks much the way it did the day after Katrina hit, and in fact, if anything, the only way to "avoid" seeing signs of that calamity, is to stick to the Quarter, or drive along the "belt" (St. Charles Ave.) and stay close to what the natives call "Uptown". The areas of truly total devastation are ones which you will not want to visit, unless sightseeing catastrophe is your thing, and even Graylines offers a tour for this purpose.
Sorry I couldn't resist a thread focused on my hometown. Have a great cruise!