Ex-flood authority leader picks apart arguments against suing oil interests | The Lens – John Barry, who was ousted by Gov. Bobby Jindal from the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East after spearheading the agency’s lawsuit against industries that have destroyed the coast, offers a point-by-point refutation of the Jindal team’s arguments for going easy on the malefactors. Barry says the Jindal administration continues to treat the lawsuit as public enemy No. 1, when the real problem is ongoing coastal loss.
Stephanie Grace: Will oil, gas lawsuit keep erosion conversation going? | The Advocate — Grace contends that the Flood Protection Authority lawsuit against oil and gas firms has started a “long overdue” conversation about accountability for coastal loss. She notes a story in The Advocate about Jefferson and Plaquemines parishes eyeing the possibility of similar lawsuits.
For Strengthening Levees, Bermuda Grass Is Hard To Beat | WWNO – An audio follow-up to Lens environmental reporter Bob Marshall’s piece on various alternatives for armoring the levees against erosion and collapse.
Interactive graphic: How Typhoon Haiyan compares to Hurricane Katrina | The Des Moines Register – The Register offers a terrifying comparison of satellite images of “Super Typhoon” Haiyan and Hurricane Katrina. Haiyan is superimposed into the Gulf of Mexico, and absolutely dwarfs Hurricane Katrina. The typhoon’s wind speeds of 195 mph were over 50 percent stronger than those of Hurricane Katrina when it made landfall. I shudder to think that we will eventually become acquainted with the term “Super Hurricane” in my lifetime.
Government & Politics
AARP looks to legislate payday loans | The Advocate – AARP will push legislation to limit payday loan interest rates to 36 percent, mirroring the interest limits federal law requires for payday loans made to active military.
Fifteen states ban payday loans, according to the Louisiana Budget Project, a Baton Rouge-based group that studies the impact of government policies on the poor and middle income. Nine other states stringently regulate the industry. Louisiana is one of those 28 states that have a law but the law is ineffective, said David Gray, policy analyst for the Louisiana Budget Project. “Our state protections don’t really prove effective,” Gray told the Press Club of Baton Rouge on Monday. The average Louisiana customer takes out eight additional loans to pay the one loan. The average Louisiana customer pays $270 fees for a $100 loan, he said.
Bobby Jindal In Louisiana For Almost 10 Months During Last Year! | The Daily Kingfish – Blogger Lamar Parmentel puts a humorous spin on a report showing that Gov. Bobby Jindal was out of state over two months, often to raise funds for GOP gubernatorial races.
The battle of Royal Street | Uptown Messenger – Owen Courreges looks into the allegation that a New Orleans taxicab bureau employee assaulted a tour guide in the French Quarter.
N.O. Juvenile Court judges, coroner tell council they need more money | The New Orleans Advocate – “Mayor Mitch Landrieu, who lost his bid in the Legislature this year to slash the number of Juvenile Court judges in New Orleans, has proposed a 2014 budget for the court that would force it to downsize anyway, the City Council was told Monday. The mayor’s proposed budget trims the court’s financing by $600,000, from more than $3.6 million last year to just over $3 million.”
La. Supreme Court upholds ruling against N.O. anti-begging law | The New Orleans Advocate – The New Orleans city ordinance used to arrest over 1,000 panhandlers during the past three years has been ruled unconstitutional.
New arts-oriented Orleans charter changes principals mid-year | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – “Principal Sara Leikin has resigned from the Homer A. Plessy Community School, a new school that aims to serve St. Roch, St. Claude, Marigny and Bywater children with an arts-oriented curriculum. Joan Reilly will take her place, charter board chair Ben McLeish said Monday.”
KIPP board gets advice on school governance | The Lens – The board overseeing KIPP New Orleans schools took a two-day retreat to hone their governance skills. Charter School Reporting Corps member Jenny Peterson was there to cover the sessions.
NORA figures it will never sell some of its Road Home properties in Lower 9th Ward | The Lens – New Orleans Redevelopment Authority Executive Director Jeff Hebert said his agency is using the same techniques as other cities facing blight caused by depopulation. The problem, Hebert said, is that there’s simply a glut of properties with low market values.
Project to raise Mississippi River levee will close two sections of bike path in Jefferson Parish | The Lens – “The project to raise the levee on the east bank of the Mississippi River will shift to Jefferson Parish soon, closing two stretches of the bike path atop the levee for about a year each.”
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