Live chat Tuesday: Talk to Bob Marshall about challenges facing coastal Louisiana — The Lens | Today at 1 p.m., Marshall will participate in a live chat about whether there’s hope for the coast. Is it too late to reverse the accelerating loss of land? Should we spend $50 billion in restoration projects? The theme is also the focus of a Lens “salon” at Loyola Wednesday evening at 6 p.m.
30 years of time-lapse satellite images show coastal Louisiana wasting away — The Lens | Time-lapse images illustrate what we knew was happening: Over 30 years, islands and beaches have moved north, channels have widened, and marshes have turned to open water without a blade of grass for miles. But they also show portions of the coast growing, reinvigorated by restoration projects.
Shale fracking proves $30 billion-a-year boon to waste disposal industry — NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune | In the nearly 2,500 oil and gas “fracking” drill sites in Louisiana, immense amounts of treated water are pumped into the ground to release the hydrocarbons. Afterwards, all that polluted water has to be disposed of.
Government & Politics
Political Horizons: Public input impacts budget alternative — The Advocate | This article gets back to the “closing loopholes or raising taxes” argument. Bob Reid of the Tea Party of Louisiana believes ending government subsidies in the form of targeted tax credits is tantamount to a tax increase, and his group spent “$10,000 to $15,000 to make about a half-million automated phone calls — or ‘robo calls’ — to condemn” members of the Legislature who supported a bill to end certain breaks.
Ethics Review Board reappoints IG Quatrevaux for another four years — The Advocate | “Among the results Quatrevaux touted in an end-of-the-year news release late in December were investigations that resulted in 10 indictments and 10 convictions, potential loss prevention that exceeded the OIG’s budget ‘several times over.'”
Auditor faults charter school oversight — The Advocate | “The review says the Louisiana Department of Education, or LDOE, did not verify that data used to calculate how charter schools are faring is reliable and failed to do all the required academic oversight.”
The old two-year college try: John Maginnis | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune |
In the most audacious power play of the legislative session, one that is shaking the foundations of higher education, the two-year colleges are close to pulling off a $250 million end run on established procedure in order to build 28 training and technology centers all around the state. Supporters hail the plan as essential to training a skilled workforce to fill technical jobs in high-demand areas. Opponents call it a debt-ceiling buster that violates the spirit if not the letter of the Constitution and robs four-year colleges of badly needed resources.
Progress in the Parish: Why Jefferson Schools Should Reject Collective Bargaining — The Pelican Post | The Pelican Post presents five reasons why the school board should choose advancing student outcomes over “pleasing special interests.”
NOPD crime stats should be examined by legislative auditor, state Sen. J.P. Morrell says — NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune | “A New Orleans lawmaker is calling for state officials to dig into NOPD crime statistics that suggest the city’s high murder rate is out of step with a relatively low number of other violent crimes. Sen. J.P. Morrell said those numbers ‘don’t make sense,’ and called into question whether the numbers promoted by the city are accurate.”
Residents want end to violence, consent decree — The Louisiana Weekly | Editor Edmund Lewis writes that “a growing number of residents and leaders are saying that the city needs both the NOPD consent decree and a concerted effort to end Black-on-Black violence to reach its full potential.”
Navy gives up Algiers land for Federal City development Tuesday — NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune | “More than two years after Congress and the president authorized the land transfer, the Navy on Tuesday will give up as many as 156 acres and the buildings it owns in Algiers that is being redeveloped as the Federal City. Some of the buildings date to the early 1900s, when the Navy opened a Naval Station along the Mississippi River’s West Bank of New Orleans, while others are more modern.”
Lower Garden District neighbors seek explanations for changes at NORD facility at Annunciation Square — Uptown Messenger | “The New Orleans Recreation Department Commission is consolidating its offices into a building at Annunciation Park, which will require moving the programs there out of the facility to the newly-renovated Lyons Center and other locations, said Coliseum Square Association president Jim McAlister. The outdoor space, however, will remain the same, McAlister said.”