This week on Behind the Lens, the mismanagement at John F. Kennedy High School had been going on for years before officials previously acknowledged, a lawyer representing former students in an ongoing class-action lawsuit alleges.

The city’s 2021 general fund budget is projected to shrink by roughly $92 million compared to what was originally budgeted, pre-COVID-19, for 2020 — or roughly $46 million less than what the administration now expects to spend this year. Where will the cuts be?

And a member of the New Orleans Public Library Board of Directors this week came out against a tax proposal, backed by Mayor LaToya Cantrell, that could cut the library’s tax revenues by about 40 percent. 

Cantrell’s proposed 2021 budget allocates only $1.6 million for the Orleans Public Defenders, but an August ordinance mandated that it increase to 85 percent of the District Attorney’s budget, which would work out to $4.8 million. 

Our guests this week are education reporter Marta Jewson, government and cultural economy reporter Michael Isaac Stein, and The Lens editor, Charles Maldonado.

Behind The Lens is available on Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Play and Stitcher. And we broadcast the show on community radio stations 102.3 FM WHIV LP in Mid-City and 90.3 FM WAMF-LP in the Marigny.

Carolyne Heldman

Carolyne Heldman has been in media for 35 years, most recently as Executive Director at an NPR member station in Colorado where she was responsible for new multi-platform content initiatives, strategic...