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Find the latest breaking news and in-depth features from around Louisiana and the Gulf Coast, right here on 89.9 WWNO.

Today the Orleans Parish School Board has a new superintendent, but no board member to fill an empty seat.

Tuesday night the School Board unanimously approved a contract for Henderson Lewis Jr., and ended an almost three year search for a new superintendent.

Lewis previously served as superintendent for East Feliciana Parish. He says his main priority is uniting the School Board and Recovery School District to serve all students.

The Jindal administration’s plan to sell off the remaining 40 percent of Louisiana’s tax settlement went before the board that oversees the tobacco dollars Tuesday. The administration wants to complete the sale by June 30, the end of the current fiscal year. They’re hoping the money will be available to help with balancing the 2016 budget, which has an anticipated $1.6-billion shortfall.

“You never make a financial decision this important when you’re under this kind of financial pressure,” state Treasurer John Kennedy objected to board members.

NASA / Wikimedia Commons

The Disaster Resilience Leadership Academy at Tulane University received $1.4 million from the BP Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative to fund research about impacts of the 2010 oil spill in Louisiana and Alabama. 

This three year program will focus on three coastal communities. Two areas in Louisiana and one in Alabama will be selected to study the impact of the oil spill.

New Orleans Police Department

Early in the morning of Friday, March 13, a 55-year-old woman reported that she had been accosted by a man inside the Tulane Medical Center parking garage.

The economic development group Greater New Orleans Incorporated says the region is thriving as it approaches the 10-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. The group says the greatest challenge is becoming complacent with success.

Update at 6:13 p.m. ET

The search continues for an Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter that crashed late Tuesday night off the Florida coast. Seven Marines and four members of the Louisiana National Guard were on a routine nighttime training mission at Eglin Air Force Base.

Anticipating the coming fiscal year’s massive shortfall, Louisiana’s legislature commissioned a comprehensive analysis of the state’s entire tax structure. That report was delivered Tuesday.

“Do we have the right tax structure for 2015 and on?” LSU economist Jim Richardson said was the main question being considered. “It’s a tax structure we put in place in 1973.”


The New Orleans Saints have traded tight end Jimmy Graham to the Seattle Seahawks.

Graham, a fan favorite, set numerous club records and was a potent tool in the Saints’ offensive arsenal — but had suffered from nagging injuries and declining performance this past season.

Graham will be sent to Seattle along with a fourth-round draft pick, in exchange for Seattle center Max Unger and a first-round pick.

The Saints now have three of the first 44 2015 draft picks.

Governor Bobby Jindal is telling the nation that the state economy is better than ever. But one political expert is seeing some local astonishment over that assessment.

Mallory Falk / WWNO

Last week the state school board voted to close Lagniappe Academies after a report outlined special education violations at the Tremé charter school. On Monday night, families held a rally to fight that decision.

Harold Bailey Sr. was one of three parents and grandparents to speak out against the school closure. He says the state should get rid of the administrators but keep the school open.

"This isn't choice," he said. "We don't want this. And this is not what children need. They need stability."

Parent Anthony Parker expressed similar feelings.

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