John White highlights signature initiatives in New Orleans-area tour | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune
Superintendent John White spent a low-key day in Orleans and Jefferson parishes on Tuesday talking with teachers and students about several of his signature initiatives. They include broadening access to early childhood education and making sure it prepares children for kindergarten; supplementing traditional coursework with virtual learning and other innovative options; creating a new career diploma that qualifies teenagers for well-paid industry jobs; and, of course, Common Core.
White, head of the state Department of Education, said he would ease teacher and school evaluation consequences this year, as new Common Core standards are implemented. “Lets give our teachers more room to do this work for the first time,” he said.
Open records on scholarships | The Advocate – An editorial urges the clerk of the state House of Representatives to release the applications for Tulane scholarships, as requested by investigative reporters. The reporters seek to determine whether cronyism and payback still figure into the awarding of these scholarships by state politicians.
Government & Politics
Landrieu strikes bargain with trash haulers | The New Orleans Advocate
The mayor has stopped pursuing the argument that Metro Disposal and Richard’s Disposal, which are paid on the basis of how many addresses they collect from, have been overcounting households. In return, the companies have agreed to basically stick with that disputed count, which dates from 2011, through the end of 2016.
Amid expansion, New Orleans RTA to consider raising fares, taxes | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – The Regional Transit Authority is considering a hike in bus fare from $1.25 to $1.50, to relieve a projected $10 million deficit in 2015.
HANO’s unexplained termination of social services provider at old Desire complex raises questions, accusations | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – A federal receiver for HANO terminated a contract with a social services provider, citing “disturbing information” he received but won’t reveal.
Uptown property comes into compliance with zoning code after years of defiance | The Lens – A front yard illegally paved to make a parking pad was remedied as the property owner eyed the real estate market.
Plan for rezoning land near airport draws fire in Kenner | The New Orleans Advocate – The Rivertown neighborhood is wary of overdevelopment on new airport properties.
It’s been a mild hurricane season to date, but best to keep that hatchet handy | The Lens – Weather experts’ predictions of an unusually rough storm season haven’t panned out so far. But, as The Lens’ Bob Marshall reminds us, that doesn’t mean we’re in the clear.
House to take up water bill without authorization for Morganza to the Gulf levees | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – “Sen. David Vitter, R-La., who helped write the Senate version of the water resources bill as top Republican on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has expressed optimism authorization for the massive flood control project would make it into the final bill negotiated by a House-Senate conference committee.”
Oil Disaster Trial Phase 2: BP vs. Reality | HuffPost Green – Andreas Merkl, president of the Ocean Conservancy claims “BP is no longer acting in good faith. They’re gambling that if they dig their heels in for long enough, they will pay much less in the long run.” I agree with Merkl’s view that BP has switched to a “long game” strategy, and aims to minimize and delay remaining payments.
Satisfaction with NOPD largely unchanged | The New Orleans Advocate – The city’s murder rate has fallen this year, but according to the latest survey New Orleanians are no more saitisfied with police performance than they were at the beginning of the year.
Why we’re still paying the cops NOPD fired | Uptown Messenger – Owen Courreges looks at the arguments, legal merits and implications of recent court decisions involving fired police officers. He observes:
The Police Officer’s Bill of Rights is completely nuts. Its proponents argue that it merely parallels the right of citizens to a speedy trial, which is a horrendously bad analogy. It effectively defines a police officer’s job as a “right,” which it is not – police officers should deal with the same job insecurity faced by the rest of us, particularly when they screw up.