utilities

This article has been updated.

A boil water advisory for the East Bank of Orleans Parish will remain in effect until further notice, the city announced this morning.

According to Marcia St. Martin, spokeswoman for the Sewerage & Water Board, there was a small fire at approximately 9 a.m. this morning in the boiler room at the Sewerage & Water Board plant on S. Claiborne Ave. The interruption caused a loss of 25-cycle power, and water pressure in the system dipped below 15 psi — the threshold for issuing a boil water advisory.

Officials in New Orleans had been warned in the months leading up to the Super Bowl there may be a power problem at the Superdome. Now they're investigating what that problem might have been.

Quotes from the press conference held today on the power outage at the Superdome during yesterday's Super Bowl.

At the press conference was:

Doug Thornton, SMG Senior VP of Stadiums and Arenas

Roger Goodell, NFL Commissioner

Eric Grubman, NFL VP of Business Operations

Charles Rice, President and CEO of Entergy

On the power outage during Super Bowl XLVII:

The Gretna City Council has revamped rules for customers seeking to avoid disconnection of water service and created guidelines to help in hardship cases.

The Times-Picayune reports the revisions give residents 15 days after a second delinquent notice to pay bills or negotiate an arrangement with the water department to do so.

Councilman Vincent Cox says he worked with city administrators on the changes after a constituent, who had lost his job, was cut off from water service.

Terrebonne Parish voters probably will decide May 4 whether to approve a property tax designed to pay for water service.

The Courier reports the Parish Council voted this past week to put the 2.11-mill property tax on the ballot. The council must still ratify the measure Jan. 23 after a public hearing.

The tax is a requirement for Terrebonne to join the Bayou Lafourche Freshwater District, which supplies Terrebonne with 80 percent of its drinking water.

Tuesday's freezing rain and sleet closed Grambling State University early, canceled flights, sent drivers skidding and broke power lines in north Louisiana.

Police in both Shreveport and Monroe closed ramps onto Interstate 20.

Grambling sent students home at noon Tuesday but Louisiana Tech stayed open. Northwestern State canceled evening classes but said it would open Wednesday. Ouachita, Richland, East Carroll, Madison, Union, West Carroll, Morehouse parishes and Monroe city schools were closed Tuesday.

Terrebonne Parish voters will decide May 4 whether to approve a property tax to pay for water service or risk higher water costs under a new contract.

The Parish Council voted unanimously Wednesday to put a 2.11-mill property tax on the ballot.

The tax is a requirement for Terrebonne to join the Bayou Lafourche Freshwater District, which supplies the parish with 80 percent of its drinking water.

Officials with New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu's administration have made their pitch to City Council members about a possible funding source to address a problem the city has struggled with since Hurricane Katrina: broken street lights.

The source would be an increased franchise fee charged to Entergy New Orleans — a fee that would be passed on to customers.

Utility companies reported thousands of power outages scattered around Louisiana as a cold front brought morning storms and colder temperatures to the state.

Entergy electric power companies reported more than 17,000 without power Thursday morning. Cleco in central Louisiana had more than 6,000 without power as of 9 a.m.

The New Orleans City Council is set to vote later today on a proposed rate hike for the Sewerage and Water Board. Political muscle is being flexed to get it passed.

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