ACT scores drop amid expanded test pool | The Advocate – “Louisiana’s performance on a national test of college readiness plummeted this year, finishing ahead of only Mississippi and North Carolina. But state Superintendent of Education John White said Tuesday the drop stems from a new rule that requires all high school seniors to take the exam, which is called the ACT.”
Triple Crown Of Education Opinion Research | Eduwonk – A balanced look at results from the three major education polls that were released this week, with links to each set of results as well as other commentaries.
Schools not required to tell students about anonymous hotlines | WDSU – Crimestoppers GNO operates a “Safe to Tell” program service where students can call to anonymously report violence and other incidents. The phone number is (504) 822-1111. But does anyone know about it?
3 U.S. Cities Are Among the World’s Most Vulnerable to Flood Disasters | The Atlantic Cities – Researchers rank New Orleans’ vulnerability as high, and calculate that the city should save $500 million each year to pay for future flood losses. (The city’s entire general fund budget is $492 million.)
Three years after BP, Gulf fishermen struggle to survive | Facing South – Longtime Louisiana fisherman David Arnesen claims the 2010 BP oil spill devastated fishing stocks and threatened his way of life.
COLUMN-BP puts Louisiana justice on trial: Kemp | Reuters –
BP’s increasingly bad-tempered spat with the U.S. federal court, claims administrators and the legal community in New Orleans over oil-spill compensation payments suggests the company has given up trying to win the case locally.
Instead, BP seems to be focused on getting it before a regional or national tribunal as quickly as possible in the hope of a more sympathetic hearing.
Government & Politics
Concerns raised at meeting over amount of firefighters in New Orleans | WWL-TV – At a public budget meeting, residents aired concerns about staffing shortages in the fire department, while the president of the local firefighters association said the city is “playing with a ticking bomb.” The fire chief says manpower is being allocated correctly. Mayor Mitch Landrieu puts some of the blame on the budget constraints imposed by the firefighters’ pension fund, which he describes as one of the worst in the country.
Firm tapped by Illinois for joint Medicaid program with Michigan has blemishes in other states | Chicago Tribune – An in-depth piece on Medicaid claims processor CNSI, whose performance in various states — including Louisiana — has aroused controversy:
Illinois is outsourcing part of its Medicaid program to a company that is under a federal grand jury investigation in Louisiana, was disqualified from bidding in Arkansas, was ushered out of Maine and has been the subject of complaints in Utah.
The black marks against the company, including its firing in Louisiana in March, haven’t deterred Illinois officials, who say they are confident of their recently announced plan to use the company’s services through a partnership with Michigan.
S&WB Should Delay Search for a New Leader | Bureau of Governmental Research – In October voters will vote on a charter amendment that will reshape the Sewerage and Water Board. Therefore, the BGR argues, the board should wait until after the election to begin searching for a new leader.
It makes no sense for a board that might be replaced in the next few months to select a new executive director. Its action could saddle a new board with a leader that it would not have chosen and deprive that board of a key opportunity to shape the S&WB’s future. In addition, since the executive director serves at the pleasure of the board, premature action could also discourage qualified individuals from coming forward.
Former World Trade Center building to remain; Dallas firm recommended as developer | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – The World Trade Center will stay on the New Orleans skyline, it appears, and be redeveloped into a W hotel and luxury apartment building.
Work starts on Delgado’s $21M Collier campus | New Orleans CityBusiness
After a ceremonial groundbreaking in April, Delgado Community College has started construction on a replacement for the former Sidney Collier Technical College campus in eastern New Orleans.
The site has been closed since Hurricane Katrina floodwaters caused significant damage in August 2005.
Search for Orleans Parish Prison administrator narrowed to two | NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune – “The search for a jail administrator to help Sheriff Marlin Gusman overhaul Orleans Parish Prison has been narrowed to two finalists. Both have substantial experience at large lock ups, but one has faced recent controversy, while critics worry the other may not have enough supervisory experience.”