Gaps in local storm data pose problems for estimating storm surge risk to local levees | The Lens – Because the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers didn’t have local data on how waves behave when they overtop levees and floodwalls in Louisiana, the agency relied on data from the Netherlands and California. Getting better local storm data would require expensive “hardened” gauges that can stand up to storm conditions.
Report: Royalty revenue sharing plan would cost taxpayers $49 billion | Fuel Fix – An analysis by the left-leaning Center for American Progress concludes that legislation to increase oil royalty-sharing among Gulf Coast states would cost the federal government nearly $50 billion over 30 years. The organization claims the legislation would be an “inequitable windfall” for the states.
Interestingly, the figures from the analysis — $50 billion over 30 years — is nearly aligned with the state’s Master Plan to restore the coast by 2050, which would cost approximately $50 billion. (In a previous Lens opinion piece, I shared my thoughts on the royalty plan.)
DHH issues emergency rule for water systems in response to brain-eating amoeba | The Advocate
The Louisiana health department this week issued an emergency rule requiring most water systems in the state to maintain a higher disinfectant level, the first change in required chlorine levels in almost two decades as officials respond to a rare brain-eating amoeba found in two water systems in recent months.
New Orleans ‘One App’ Now Includes Selective Public Schools | WWNO – Aesha Rasheed, who created the New Orleans Parents Guide, discusses deadlines for the city’s “One App” streamlined school application process. Bottom line: “The application deadline is Dec. 20 for the schools with selective criteria, which are new to the One App system. But not all selective schools are yet included in the One App.”
Arne Duncan ‘Encouraged’ By NAEP Results | Education Week – U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan noted that states that were among the first to implement the new Common Core standards did not see a decline in scores on a recent national standardized assessment test.
Debating New Charter Schools, Their Policies and Their Effects – Texas Tribune – “Unlike many Texas charters, particularly KIPP and IDEA public schools — which both formed with a mission to reach economically disadvantaged communities — Basis and Great Hearts tend to end up with student bodies that are disproportionately affluent and white.”
How inaction, corruption and a bit of serendipity led to the creation of Audubon Park| NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – Tulane geographer Richard Campanella’s latest “Cityscapes” column shows how the ebb and flow of historical contingencies created Uptown’s premier park.
Tax assessment for building bought for $0 slashed dramatically | WWL-TV – Is an Ohio businessman “a savior who kept an assisted living apartment afloat or an opportunist who bought a prime slice of New Orleans for a song”?
Government & Politics
The Lens launches a new event series, Breakfast with the Newsmakers | The Lens – Please join us Thursday, Nov. 21, for the inaugural event with John Barry, who was recently ousted from the local Flood Protection Authority.
Lee Zurik Investigation: Are nursing homes buying state policy? – FOX 8 WVUE – Most nursing homes in the state are for-profit and are reaping in millions because the state pays for unused beds.
City Council votes to delay 7-year age limit for N.O. cabs, but Landrieu vetoes it | The New Orleans Advocate
Scores of taxi drivers in the audience broke into applause Thursday afternoon as the New Orleans City Council voted 4-3 to delay for one year a new age limit for cabs, but the cheers almost certainly were premature.
Mayor Mitch Landrieu immediately vetoed the ordinance, and it takes five council votes to override a veto — one vote more than proponents of the change can muster.
Judges looking to get new courthouse all dressed up, but they have nowhere to go | The Lens – Lacking land, Civil District Court judges met with potential contractors and asked for building concepts.
Evidence of battery was right there on videotape | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – This editorial claims that video and testimony about a police battery incident should’ve been more than enough to show malfeasance by an officer.
Appeals court orders Serpas to pay penalties after failure to respond to public records request | The New Orleans Advocate — The NOPD will have to pay a $5,000 fine and $3,600 in attorneys’ fees for failing to respond to a public-records request within the time period required by law.
Slavery Isn’t a Thing of the Past | The New York Times – Opinion writer Nicholas Kristof describes his investigative trip to New Orleans, where he met survivors of human trafficking.