Live blog: Hearing to determine cost of OPP consent decree, who should pay for it | The Lens – The federal court hearing seeks to determine who has to pay for bringing the Orleans Parish Prison up to constitutional standards.
Marigny homeowner who shot teenager isn’t only defendant who ought to be home: Judge Calvin Johnson | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – Johnson, chairman of The Lens’ board of directors, believes the city can learn lessons from a recent controversial shooting in the Marigny. His op-ed piece notes the following disparity:
“There are hundreds of poor, largely black defendants, many of them children, who right now are sitting in jail awaiting trial for offenses far less serious than the attempted murder charge Mr. Landry faces. In fact, in New Orleans, black people stay in Orleans Parish Prison twice as long as white people, even when they have been charged with the exact same crime.”
Landrieu administration questions Gusman’s spending in fight over jail costs | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – Sheriff Marlin Gusman speculates that family allegiances are a motivation for Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s recent criticisms of the jail budget.
In reviewing the various expenditures that the city says are wasteful, Gusman said Landrieu is “playing pure politics.”
“Why? Perhaps it is because his cousin, (former Sheriff) Charles Foti, announced earlier this year that he plans to run for sheriff next year,” Gusman said.
Algiers Point businesses hurting with reduced ferry service | The Advocate – Bed and breakfasts across the river claim business has declined by upwards of 40 percent since ferry service hours have been curtailed.
Related: The Lens will live blog the Regional Transit Authority’s public hearing on new ferry fares at 5 p.m.
Major changes to Uptown drainage systems represent citywide water-management proposal | Uptown Messenger – Architect David Waggonner proposed an ambitious new water management strategy for the city that would transform canals into floodplain parks, and funnel water from Uptown Neighborhoods into the Mississippi River rather than Lake Pontchartrain. “Marcia St. Martin of the Sewerage & Water Board responded that her agency was fully on board with Waggonner’s ideas.” The estimated cost for the new plan is over $5 billion.
Neighbors upset with fast pace of Tulane Stadium construction | WWL-TV – The busy six-day-a-week pace of stadium construction is too much of a nuisance for some neighbors.
Massive tiger shrimp invaders likely have settled in Louisiana to stay | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – Predatory tiger shrimp are enormous, relative to local brown and white shrimp. Perhaps most importantly, the new monster shrimps don’t taste as sweet as the longtime local varieties. Click through to see photos of the invasive species.
Climate change pushing marine life towards the poles, says study | The Guardian
“The study, conducted by a working group of scientists from 17 different institutions, gathered data from seven different countries and found the warming oceans are causing marine species to alter their breeding, feeding and migration patterns. Surprisingly, land species are shifting at a rate of less than 1km a year in comparison, even though land surface temperatures are rising at a much faster rate than those in the ocean.”
Government & Politics
6 Louisiana cities among nations 10 most expensive for health care, report says | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – Louisiana cities pay a high price for health care, according to a recent study. Six Louisiana metro areas have particularly high health care costs, compared to those in other regions. The study accounts for differences in age, sex and health status.
For further context, see this continuing series in The New York Times, which details the nation’s high health-care costs relative to the rest of the world. So, if healthcare costs in areas of Louisiana lead the United State, and the United States leads the world in healthcare costs, does that mean Louisiana pays some of the highest health care expenses in the world? (New York Times story via The Louisiana Budget Project)
Baton Rouge redistricting case will test the future of the Voting Rights Act | Facing South — Baton Rouge is a majority-black city, yet district lines for city court judge elections have remained the same since the 2000 Census. “Three of the current judges are white and two are black, but that court composition is a reflection of a time when the city had a white majority.”
Important (and somewhat scary) teacher evaluation issues | Louisiana Educator – Education blogger Michael Deshotels compiled a Q and A for public school teachers about the new evaluation system. There are some must-read answers in the list. For example, be sure to click through and read the complete response to this query:
Q: Since the purpose of teacher evaluation is to produce better student learning, there must be a provision for giving teachers better evaluations as statewide student performance improves. Right?
A: Wrong! …
Unrelenting New Orleans special education problems alleged in new court filings | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – A lawsuit claims that students with disabilities do not have the same choice as other New Orleans students because so few schools can serve them adequately. The suit asserts systemic change is required to ensure fairness for students with special needs.