Debate rages on suing Big Oil; Landrieu yields on jail; paying for consent decrees

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CPRA Chairman Garret Graves said after the meeting that his authority would not immediately go to court to enforce the demand on the East Bank levee authority. But Graves said actions by other state officials are likely soon to bring a halt to the lawsuit, which the state says is hurting its efforts to restore wetlands under the state’s coastal Master Plan.

In this tweet by reporter Times-Picayune environmental reporter Mark Schleifstein quotes Graves saying: “I don’t see any scenario where this levee district doesn’t get gutted, or say reformed, in the next legislative session.”

A total of 130 accidents resulting from the storm were reported to the National Response Center, the federal office that collects information on oil and chemical spills in U.S. waters. Those accidents dumped at least 12.9 million gallons of pollutants and contaminated water and 192 tons of gases into the environment, according to the facilities’ own self-reported data. Among the chemicals released were known neurotoxins and carcinogens including crude oil and benzene.

Despite the fact that forecasts warned of the storm’s arrival days in advance, some of the polluting facilities still used the weather as an excuse for releases …

[Mayor Mitch] Landrieu will ask the City Council to change a 2011 city ordinance to allow construction to continue on Gusman’s $145 million inmate housing facility even though it will not be able to accommodate all inmates.

[Sheriff Marlin] Gusman was supposed to have designed that building to comply with a 2011 City Council ordinance that stipulated it could not exceed 1,438 beds and must be able to accommodate “any type of prisoner,” including special populations such as women and the sick.

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