BP could soon run out of cash in the compensation fund set up for victims of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, unless it is successful in a legal challenge that will be heard in court next week. … The company is legally committed to paying compensation, even if its fund runs out. The oil firm gave up control over the compensation formula and framework for payments to claimants in a legal settlement. But it has since gone on to dispute – so far unsuccessfully – how that formula is being applied.

“This script is all too familiar and tired,” Engelhardt said. “Earning a 5K (letter from prosecutors requesting leniency) is so common around here it’s almost like a badge of honor….The charade of public officials cooperating only after they get caught has got to stop.” [Defense lawyer Ralph] Capitelli said afterward that he was surprised by Engelhardt’s comments.

“What Judge Engelhardt did today is extremely detrimental to law enforcement’s efforts to solve public corruption cases,” Capitelli said. ” “It’s naive to think that people are going to cooperate and take risks and just be told that they shouldn’t be given any consideration, which is basically what Judge Engelhardt said today.”

As the deadline looms for new students to register at the five Orleans Parish School Board conventional schools, the Recovery School District and several community groups are angry about what they consider a nasty surprise sprung on families at the last minute. New students aren’t automatically enrolled at Ben Franklin Elementary, Mary Bethune, Mahalia Jackson, McMain and McDonogh 35; they must also complete paperwork at these schools by Monday or they will lose their assigned seat. 

A national nonprofit developer of real estate for arts organizations is moving ahead with an ambitious plan to transform a long-blighted Tremé school property into a center of arts and culture for its neighborhood. Artspace, which is based in Minneapolis, intends to redevelop the old Andrew J. Bell Middle School campus into a multi-faceted arts facility with 73 studio apartments for artists to live and work, and space for arts organizations, performance venues and community programs.

Mark Moseley

Mark Moseley blogs at Your Right Hand Thief. Until mid 2014, Mark Moseley was The Lens' opinion writer, engagement specialist and coordinator for the Charter Schools Reporting Corps. After Katrina and...