What We're Reading

Bill would make law-enforcement agencies assess backlog of rape kits; lawmakers reject cap on payday loans

Land Use

A battle over perception is brewing where the Industrial Canal meets the river. A developer wants to put apartment buildings on the old site of the Holy Cross school. Neighbors say the project doesn’t fit their neighborhood, and their voices are being drowned out by a public-relations campaign.

In a companion audio piece produced for WWNO, residents describe their concerns that the project will change the character of their neighborhood.

“I think it’s being driven by Big Oil,” said John Carmouche, part of the Baton Rouge-based law firm that filed the parishes’ lawsuits. “Big Oil is the party that destroyed the coast and is responsible. They are trying to get immunity from the courts.”

That is all the levee board suit is asking: not that this industry be heaped in blame, not that it pay for all harm, just that it pay its share. If our legislators wanted to get real about this, instead of killing the messenger they would arrange a settlement in which all contribute commensurate with the damage they’ve caused. Please remind me: Why is that such a bad idea?

Criminal Justice

Congressman McAllister’s constituents may be outraged by his infidelity, but the country should be more concerned that someone with a cell phone camera walked into a federal office, turned off the lights, and recorded the office’s security terminal. Adultery may be a sin, but it’s not a crime.

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About Charles Maldonado

Charles Maldonado covers the city of New Orleans and other local government bodies. He previously worked for Gambit, New Orleans’ alternative newsweekly, where he covered city hall, criminal justice and public health. Before moving to New Orleans, he covered state and local government for weekly papers in Nashville and Knoxville, Tenn.