Pass Christian, Miss., is a magnet for high storm surge, new database shows – NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune | “Louisiana has seen two of the top 10 highest hurricane storm surge levels along the Gulf of Mexico coast in modern times, but it’s Pass Christian, Miss., that has experienced the top two surge heights — 28 feet during Hurricane Katrina in 2005, and 24.6 feet during Hurricane Camille in 1969 — according to a new database developed by researchers at Louisiana State University.”
Two miles of sea covers Big Oil’s next-generation field – Fuel Fix |A mind-bending look at the future of energy production in the Gulf. Instead of ultra deep wells and sea level platforms, “the aim is to transplant underwater everything currently done at the surface, including well flow controls, basic processing, and transportation of the oil and gas to onshore markets. The University of Houston, which plans to offer the first U.S. graduate program in subsea engineering this fall, calls its vision of an underwater industrial oil city, overseen by free-swimming robots, ‘Project Atlantis.’ ”
Dixie Brewery faces uncertain future as former owners sue the federal government — NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune | “The battle over the Dixie Brewery has reached its tipping point as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs moves closer to the partial demolition and renovation of the historic building standing in the path of the medical complex development in Mid-City. The former owners of the Dixie, Joe and Kendra Bruno, filed several lawsuits claiming the state violated their constitutional rights when it invoked eminent domain in 2011 to take the brewery and then transfer its property rights one year later to the VA. But their cases have lingered in Civil District Court for years without resolution.”
315-25 N. Miro: Three Mid-City Dogtrots Lost to Fire — Preservation Resource Center | Three examples of dogtrot architecture, were damaged beyond repair in a recent fire. The PRC offers a history lesson on the “unique and rare” architectural style. According to the group, only fourteen examples of the 14 dogtrots remain in New Orleans.
12 Fresh Ideas for Transforming the Places We Live With Open Data — Atlantic Cities | This stimulating collection of ideas about improved information access and applicability is definitely worth your time.
Lawmakers say Jindal trying to oust college leader — Associated Press | Six Republican state lawmakers claim Jindal is attempting to pressure the Board of Regents into firing Commissioner of Higher Education Jim Purcell. The article says Purcell “has been at odds with the GOP governor over the depth of budget cuts to public colleges and what that slashing means to higher education.”
Rising costs have SciHigh leaders wondering whether to drop state pension plan — The Lens | “Based on the school’s current salaries for fiscal 2014 — which runs from July 2013 to June 2014 — SciHigh will see an increase of $60,500 in retirement expenses, school Director of Finance Claudia Kent said.”
As NOPD shrinks to historic low, response times tick up — WWLTV.com | “The size of the New Orleans Police Department is at a historic low and continues to shrink, while the average time it takes police to respond ticks up. Fourteen-and-a-half minutes. That’s how long it takes, on average, for the NOPD to respond to an emergency call for a violent crime. That’s 14 minutes and 30 seconds for shootings, beatings, robberies and more.”
Mayor Landrieu and NAACP hold discussion on police — but not in the same church — NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune |
The dustup between Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the local NAACP, culminating in simultaneous but separate community meetings on Monday evening, came down to this: whether it’s more important for New Orleans to be talking about alleged racial profiling by police officers or how to halt the violence that claims so many of the city’s young black men every year.
My reaction to this dust-up: both conversations are important, related and necessary. It’s not an “either/or.”
Smart on Crime — Democracy Journal of Ideas | A long, over-arching and worthwhile essay on effective crime control and prevention.
Government & Politics
Goodbye Hollywood South, hello tax on Audubon Zoo — The Louisiana Weekly | In a detailed, but straightforward story about resistance to Gov. Jindal’s plan to trim part of the “Hollywood South” tax credits, we find this tantalizing proposal: “Nowhere, however, has the governor said anything about the pace of the phase out of the income tax, and there might be a compromise. Jindal has insisted on revenue neutrality, yet a multi-year phase out of the personal income tax and a phase in of the sales taxes on exemptions could provide the breathing space for the legislature to consider other alternatives.”
Vitter’s efforts in the Senate outlast the shadow of his scandal — The Washington Post | How did Sen. David Vitter overcome the “D.C. Madam” scandal in 2007? Essentially: hard work. This piece overviews recent success Vitter has had with bipartisan legislation. “Late Friday night, during the marathon debate on the budget, Vitter and another Democratic ally, [Ohio Sen. Sherrod] Brown, won unanimous approval of their non-binding amendment that would end federal subsidies for banks with more than $500 billion in holdings. The Vitter-Brown partnership, first struck up in 2012, is the kind of odd coupling that used to be common in the Senate.”
“Demagogues” coming out of the woodwork — Library Chronicles | Local blogger Jeffrey collects the various analyses and professional opinions on Gov. Bobby Jindal’s tax overhaul plan. The near consensus, according to Jeffrey, is that “most everybody” hates it.