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Education
12:43 pm
Tue July 31, 2012

'Unacceptable' schools list swells from last year

Education officials say the number of public schools facing state sanctions rose by 33 percent this year amid tougher state standards.

Barry Landry, a spokesman for the state Department of Education, tells The Advocate a total of 180 schools are listed as academically unacceptable, up from 135 last year.

The list represents 13 percent of public schools statewide.

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Louisiana Judiciary Commission
12:41 pm
Tue July 31, 2012

Whitney named Judiciary Commission special counsel

Attorney Mary Whitney has been selected to serve as special counsel for the Louisiana Judiciary Commission.

The nine-member commission reviews allegations of judicial misconduct. The commission's Office of Special Counsel receives, investigates, and prosecutes formal charges regarding judicial behavior.

The Louisiana Supreme Court announced Whitney's appointment Monday.

The court says Whitney received undergraduate and graduate degrees from Nicholls State before getting a law degree from Florida State in 1992.

Politics
12:39 pm
Tue July 31, 2012

Congressman asks Jindal to expand Louisiana Medicaid

A New Orleans congressman is asking Gov. Bobby Jindal to reconsider his position against expanding Louisiana's Medicaid program, as allowed under the federal health care overhaul.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond sent the Republican governor a letter Monday saying as many as 400,000 Louisiana residents would be eligible to get insurance under the Medicaid expansion.

Richmond says low-income families wouldn't have a viable plan for getting coverage without the expansion, which covers adults up to 133 percent of the poverty level.

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Boh Brothers Sexual Harassment Lawsuit
3:42 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Court reverses iron worker's $300K sexual harassment award

A federal appeals court has thrown out a $300,000 court award for an iron worker in a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against Boh Brothers Construction Company.

The worker won the award in 2009 after the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit on his behalf. He claimed his site superintendent flashed him and routinely taunted him about seeming feminine at a New Orleans area bridge project in 2006.

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Taxicab Reforms
3:13 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Cab drivers attempt to stop taxicab reforms

New Orleans cab drivers say new city rules aimed at improving taxi service are too expensive, and they were given too little time to prepare for them. City and tourism officials say the changes are needed to improve an outdated fleet.

The rules include requirements that cabs be less than 11 years old, able to take credit cards, and have cameras and GPS units.

Dirty License Plates
3:09 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

State police watching for dirty license plates

Louisiana state police and local law enforcement agencies are telling motorists to clean off their dirty license plates.

State police say in a news release the motorists caught with their license plates obscured in any way, including by dirt, mud or frames that cover part of the plate, could be ticketed.

Louisiana law requires vehicle license plates be clearly displayed, as well as illuminated at night by license plate lights.

Business & Technology
3:07 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Tech forum planned in New Orleans

The Louisiana Technology Council is planning a forum for chief executive officers and chief information officers on Aug. 24. The events will take place from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at the Loews Hotel in New Orleans.

Among speakers will be Frank DeArmas, vice president and CIO of Johnson & Johnson.

Admission is by fee. More details are available by calling 304-2910.

Wildlife Impact Meeting
3:06 pm
Mon July 30, 2012

Corps holds meeting on levee work

The Army Corps of Engineers plans a public meeting Tuesday on measures it is taking to mitigate the impact of wildlife habitat as construction continues on a levee and flood protection system in Plaquemines, Jefferson and St. Charles parishes.

The presentation and discussion are set for 6:30 p.m. at the Ernest Tassin Senior Center on Fourth Street in Westwego.

Hubig's Pie Factory Fire
1:11 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Fire destroys Hubig's Pies factory in New Orleans

A five-alarm fire has destroyed a factory which had made hand-sized fried pies since 1922 and singed nearby houses, but nobody was injured.

Fire Superintendent Charles Parent tells WWL-TV that the factory is a total loss but firefighters limited damage to nearby houses to their exteriors.

He says the blaze began in the fryer room. Parent says the only employee on duty reported seeing smoke there and got out safely.

The Simon Hubig Pie Co. factory was the only one in a Texas-based chain to survive the Great Depression.

City Council
1:06 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

New Orleans City Council fills Johnson's seat

The New Orleans City Council has appointed attorney Ernest "Freddie" Charbonnet as the interim replacement for the District E seat vacated last week when Jon Johnson abruptly resigned after pleading guilty to federal corruption charges.

Charbonnet is a former assistant city attorney now in private practice. The Times-Picayune reports that he received votes from the council's four white members Thursday. Its two black members voted against the appointment.

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