Gusman questioned in court on spending — The Advocate | Sheriff Marlin Gusman took the stand Monday, the first day of the second hearing on the prison consent decree. The hearing is focused on the sheriff’s budget, which turns out to be a troublingly interesting topic. “The sheriff’s accounting practices are reminiscent of ‘The Wizard of Oz,’” said Harry Rosenberg, who’s representing New Orleans city government in the case.
Because of a drop in the inmate population at Orleans Parish Prison, Sheriff Marlin Gusman told a federal judge Monday that he is anticipating about a $4 million budget shortfall through the end of 2013. That estimate does not include potential costs associated with a pending federal consent decree that could cost as much as $22 million a year to implement broad changes at the prison, which has long been plagued by high rates of suicide, violence and escape.
Assange, back in news, never left U.S. radar – The New York Times | The Times has an update on Julian Assange, who’s back on the front page this week because of WikiLeaks’ support for NSA leaker Edward Snowden. Here’s the interesting part: The Justice Department confirms to the newspaper that it is investigating WikiLeaks, which published confidential government documents. Of course, WikiLeaks’ partners, The New York Times and The Guardian, did the same thing. “If the government charged WikiLeaks and Mr. Assange as co-conspirators, it would be arguing that, unlike their partners, they are not journalists.” The Times’ assistant general counsel says a proposed shield law meant to protect journalists from prosecution “tries to define Wiki-like publishers out of the definition of news organizations.” More on that from the First Amendment Center.
The court did not strike down the advance approval requirement of the law that has been used, mainly in the South, to open up polling places to minority voters in the nearly half century since it was first enacted in 1965. But the justices did say lawmakers must update the formula for determining which parts of the country must seek Washington’s approval, in advance, for election changes.
Private company takes over management of New Orleans public hospital — The Advocate | Louisiana Children’s Medical Center quietly took over Interim LSU Hospital on Monday. The hospital’s CEO described the privatization as a “non-event.” Here are some other non-events in this story: The LSU Board of Supervisors agreed last fall to privatize all 10 LSU hospitals. It is now this summer, and only five of those deals are done — none fully and truly done, however, because the federal agency that determines whether the new operators are eligible for Medicare and Medicaid payments has yet to sign off on any of them.
Some New Orleans lawmakers said Monday they are not happy with Gov. Bobby Jindal’s decision to remove funding for children and people with disabilities from next year’s budget, and support holding a special veto session to consider overriding those cuts. However, they acknowledge the possibility of convening such a session is slim.
Lawmakers aren’t the only ones who are angry.
NOLA lawmakers angry about Jindal vetoes, want override session http://t.co/Arf9do4Nno /gov will regret cuts 2 local homeland security depts
President Obama will propose a sweeping plan to address climate change on Tuesday, setting ambitious goals and timetables for a series of executive actions to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and prepare the nation for the ravages of a warming planet.
The speech is scheduled for 12:35 p.m. (CDT) today.
Union leaders meet with Morris Jeff school’s governance committee for first time — The Lens | The city’s first charter school union has its first official meet-and-greet with the governing board. “On Thursday, union co-presidents Tiana Nobile and Rowan Shafer sat down to talk with committee members about everything from potential charter revisions to the possibility of engaging a labor attorney for future questions,” reports Della Hasselle of our Charter School Reporting Corps.
Owen Courreges: How to read the new ‘anti-noise’ proposals — Uptown Messenger | Owen Courreges really, really hates a new seven-point plan to crack down on “excess noise” proposed by a coalition of neighborhood groups. He says their ideas for enforcement are unreasonable and have already been taken down in the courts. He also says this: “Because these folks are not only fascists but cowards, they also cancelled their planned press conference when it came to light that protests would erupt.”
Charles Maldonado is the editor of The Lens. He previously worked as The Lens' government accountability reporter, covering local politics and criminal justice. Prior to joining The Lens, he worked for...
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