Government & Politics
Stephanie Grace: Board sees limits of independence | The New Orleans Advocate – At least the Jindal administration isn’t being coy about its intent to replace members on the levee board who are leading a coastal erosion lawsuit against oil and gas companies. The board was supposed to be insulated from political influence.
Jindal looks to privatize health care programs | The New Orleans Advocate – “Gov. Bobby Jindal has begun work on privatizing the last big chunk of health-care programs still being run by state government.” He’s targeting government programs that serve the elderly and developmentally disabled.
Rising Tide 8 (live coverage) | Uptown Messenger – Journalist Robert Morris covered the Rising Tide new media conference held Saturday at Xavier University of Louisiana. The featured speaker was retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré, who delivered a stemwinder on environmental justice. Other panels focused on charter school accountability (live-blogged by The Lens), creating community for writers of color, and New Orleans’ tourism-based economy.
State agency waived nearly half of mineral extraction penalties since 2008, audit shows | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune
Louisiana’s Office of Mineral Resources waived nearly $6 million in penalties against mineral extraction companies and failed to collect a further $1.4 million in royalty payments between 2008 and 2012, according to a report released Monday by the state Legislative Auditor.
As Arctic Melts, a Race to Test Oil Spill Cleanup Technology | National Geographic – “The infamous BP blowout has cast a long shadow over the industry, leaving many wondering if the Coast Guard (USCG) and the oil industry really are ready to deal with a big spill in the Arctic, where the weather is far worse and any help is much farther away. “
Losing WTC bidder challenges winning developer’s selection | The New Orleans Advocate – One of the losing bidders for the redevelopment of the former World Trade Center site contends that Gatehouse Capital Corp., which won a recommendation for the job, changed its proposal after the submission deadline.
Mississippi River levee path in Algiers expected to advance this week | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune
“It’s really going to tie Algiers together in a way it hasn’t seen in many years,” said New Orleans City Councilwoman Kristin Palmer, an original proponent for the levee path in Algiers. “Really, this is unprecedented.”
Invalid state laws often stay on books | The New Orleans Advocate – Unenforceable criminal statutes remain on the books in Louisiana.
Pete Adams, director of the Louisiana District Attorneys Association, said no one has suggested going through the criminal statutes to do a “clean up.”
He said the attitude has been that as along as nobody is trying to enforce the unconstitutional laws, there is no reason to tackle the subject.
“It’s only when something like the recent stuff in Baton Rouge comes up does it get attention,” said Adams, referring to the anti-sodomy arrests [in a sting operation by the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office]. “I think cleaning up that one statute has got to happen now.”
[House Clerk Butch] Speer said tampering with criminal laws could inadvertently create avenues of appeal for criminal defendants.
Inspector general reveals he trashed police monitor’s report in 2011, and other political news | The New Orleans Advocate – Emails show a “sour relationship” between New Orleans inspector general Ed Quatrevaux and Susan Hutson, the city’s independent police monitor.
Nola Mayor Soft On Gutter Punks | Cap Black – Conservative anti-crime activist Nadra Enzi, known on social media and talk radio as Captain Black, contends that Mayor Mitch Landrieu and the New Orleans Police Department are lenient on “gutter punks,” which Enzi describes as white gangs.
Our View: We knew this day would come | The News Star – The state Department of Education’s lack of oversight on the voucher school program troubles the editors of the News Star.
Speech about how educators can reach troubled students hits home for principal | The Lens – The NET Charter High School, an alternative school, has lost two of its students to violence during the summer.
Tea party opposition to Common Core could have implications | The New Orleans Advocate – “So far, the pushback has not slowed Louisiana’s implementation of the new standards, which has been underway for years. But it could have real implications for Republicans like Gov. Bobby Jindal and U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy.”