Advocate Issac Update

1 a.m. – Isaac just west of Baton Rouge Show caption As of 1 a.m. the center of Tropical Storm Isaac was located near Latitude 30.5 north, Longitude 91.3 west and is about 10 miles west-southwest of Baton Rouge. The maximum sustained winds have now dropped to 50 mph as it continues to move northwest at 5 mph.

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Shelter List – From the Advocate

Shelters in Louisiana Advocate staff report

Ascension Parish

Shelters open at 5 a.m. Tuesday at Donaldsonville and Dutchtown high schools.

Assumption Parish

A shelter of last resort opens at 8 a.m. Tuesday at Belle Rose Middle School, 7717 La. 1, Belle Rose.

The school will run off generator power. All evacuees should bring all needed items, such as sleeping bags, pillows, blankets, toiletries, personal hygiene items, medicines, food, water and personal identification. No cots will be provided.

East Baton Rouge Parish

LSU’s Carl Maddox Field House, adjacent to the Bernie Moore Track and Field facility, for medical and special needs, eligibility required. Call (800) 349-1372 for information.

Iberville Parish

Plaquemine Senior High: 59595 Belleview Drive, Plaquemine

East Iberville High: 3825 Highway 75, St. Gabriel

North Iberville High: 13770 Highway 77, Rosedale

Livingston Parish

Albany High School opens at 6 p.m.

Doyle High School in Livingston will open as a shelter at 6 p.m. Monday. The shelter will not be able to accommodate pets.

Live Oak Middle School in Watson will be open at 3 p.m. Tuesday.

Pointe Coupee Parish

Scott Civic Center: 1200 Major Parkway, New Roads.

St. Helena Parish

The St. Helena Central High School gym will serve as a shelter for residents if needed. The St. Helena Central Elementary School gym will house any overflow. Both schools are in Greensburg.

St. James Parish

St. James Parish opens shelters at 6 p.m. Monday for parish residents only at Lutcher High School in Lutcher and St. James High School in Vacherie. Shelter transportation will be available from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. Tuesday. Call the parish Department of Human Resources at (225) 562-2352 to schedule a ride. To accommodate residents with special needs, call (800) 228-9409. Bring medication and all necessities, including water and food for 72 hours.

St. Mary Parish

The Berwick Civic Center opened as a shelter at 8 a.m. Wednesday. Those seeking shelter need to bring their own supplies, including food, clothes, bedding, medicines and flashlights. Residents may need a light leaving their homes and getting into the shelter.

Tangipahoa Parish

Six public shelters of last resort will open at 5 p.m. Monday. Shelters are staffed to provide security and shelter only. Residents should bring food, water, bedding, medications and any other needed personal items. Shelter locations are Hammond Westside Elementary Montessori School, Hammond Junior High Magnet School, Natalbany Elementary School, Nesom Middle School, Amite High School and Kentwood High Magnet School. Residents who evacuate to shelters with pets must have the pet in a carrier, with an adequate leash, collar, food, bowls and medications. Pets will not be housed at the shelter for residents, but will be transported to a separate site for housing and care.

Washington Parish

Elizabeth Sullivan Memorial Methodist Church: 510 Ave. B, Bogalusa.

Franklinton High School: 1 Demon Circle, Franklinton.

Elizabeth Sullivan Memorial Methodist Church: 510 Ave. B, Bogalusa.

West Baton Rouge Parish

The Erwinville Community Center and the Addis VFW Hall will be open as shelters beginning at 1 p.m. Tuesday. No pets allowed.

Copyright © 2011, Capital City Press LLC • 7290 Bluebonnet Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA 70810 • All Rights Reserved

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Hurricane Issac Statewide info

Stay tuned for the 10 a.m. advisory

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Reaction From Laura S. Nata of FHF=Jefferson in regard to WWLTV investigation

Jason, Thanks for emailing me. Yes all these things have been happening. I worked closely with this group especially Benny from Southern Poverty of ongoing discrimination. The adults are indeed the worst. Nevertheless I believe in the justice system and know this will be corrected and send message to others statewide to stop killing the chance of a future to students thru education. This will not be tolerated! Laura S. Nata

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Latino Discrimination in Jefferson Parish Schools – From WWLTV

I am going to be talking with Laura S. Nata from FHF-Jefferson concerning this story, I am shocked to hear that something like this is taking place in the schools.
Claim: Latino discrimination in Jefferson schools .Print
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Posted on August 22, 2012 at 11:14 AM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Southern Poverty Law Center says Jefferson Parish public schools discriminate against Latino students by letting employees harass students about their citizenship and by failing to provide translators for parents who speak little English.

For instance, it says on its website, officials at West Jefferson High School took no action against a teacher who called a student a “wetback” during class and did not move the boy out of that class.

And, it says, a woman whose three children are in the school system has given up attending parent-teacher conferences or school open houses because she cannot understand what is being said.

A civil rights complaint was filed Wednesday with the federal education and justice departments on behalf of 16 Latino students and their families.


Southern Poverty Law Center:

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Are there too many Boards/Commissions? – From the Advocate

Report: La. bureaucracy swells over past 20 years By Marsha Shuler

Capitol news bureau

The number of Louisiana boards, commissions and other similar entities has grown by 45 percent in the past two decades, according to a new legislative auditor’s report.

The increase continued despite a legislative effort that has eliminated dozens of state-created boards in recent years.

“That is shocking to me. Do we need them? Are they effective?” said state Rep. Johnny Berthelot, R-Gonzales, who sponsored a bill in this year’s legislative session eliminating eight groups.

Berthelot said he will take a cue from recommendations in the auditor’s report to sponsor legislation next year to scrap others.

State law requires the auditor’s office to submit an annual report to the Legislature to assist in controlling the growth and costs of state boards, commissions and local entities created by state law.

The 2012 report shows that there are 492 government-created entities, up from 338 in 1992.

At least five of the groups created during 2010 or earlier have never been fully organized or are not functioning and should be considered by the Legislature and/or Governor’s Office for elimination, the report from Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera’s office found.

The five are Drug Free Schools and Communities, an arm of a governor’s advisory council; the Concordia Parish Port Commission; the Vidalia Port Commission; the Post Employment Benefits Trust Fund; and the North Bossier Levee and Drainage District Board of Commissioners.

The auditor’s report notes the growth in boards, commissions and other groups since 1992. Their number hit a high of 513 in 2004.

Since the 2011 report, six entities have been created and six either repealed by law or terminated in accordance with law or executive order, leaving the number at 492.

The numbers remain high in spite of annual efforts led in the past by former state Rep. Mert Smiley, R-St. Amant, and now Berthelot that led to scrapping of nonfunctioning entities.

The auditor also reported that 44 groups did not provide requested information required by state law.

Among the groups are the Interstate 10/12 Corridor Commission, the Interstate 49 North Extension Feasibility and Funding Task Force, the Interstate 49 South Feasibility and Funding Task Force, the Juvenile Justice Reform Act Implementation Commission, the Medicaid Pharmaceutical and Therapeutics Committee, the Naval War Memorial Commissioners, the Poverty Point Reservoir District Board of Commissioners and municipal employee, municipal police, registrar of voters’ employee and sheriffs’ pension fund boards.

The auditor’s office reported that of the 433 groups that did respond to its request for information, 277 pay per diem, salaries and or travel of board members.

The report also shows that spending in each area is increasing.

The entities’ budgets show $1.48 million allocated for per diem payments in 2012 — up from $1.08 million actually spent in 2011; $2.72 million budgeted for board member salaries — up from $1.56 million actually spent the prior year; and $2.29 million on board member travel compared with $2.11 million spent the prior year.

Copyright © 2011, Capital City Press LLC • 7290 Bluebonnet Blvd., Baton Rouge, LA 70810 • All Rights Reserved

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Proposed changes to LSU Board of Supervisors – The Advocate

LSU Board considering structural changes by koran addo

Capital news bureau

Members of a consulting firm helping LSU find a new system president presented the Board of Supervisors with three distinct scenarios Saturday, each spelling out different structural paths the university could take in the future.

Two of the options include consolidating the president and Baton Rouge chancellor positions.

In wide-ranging discussions after the consultants left the seven-hour retreat at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, board members discussed bringing in an advisory panel to oversee LSU’s hospital system, and the possible benefits of bringing the flagship campus, law school and agricultural center under one umbrella.

The Board did not take action on any of those ideas.

Board Chairman Hank Danos said Saturday that the Board would have to make those structural decisions before selecting a new president.

The best-case scenario would be to settle on a path forward before the end of the year.

“We can’t run away for fear of criticism, and we can’t go forward without being thorough,” Danos said.

LSU Faculty Senate President Kevin Cope, who has been critical of the search process for what he says is a lack of faculty input, said after listening to the discussions that he was relieved the board had not settled on a businessman or “nontraditional” candidate to lead LSU.

“People in the university are demoralized,” Cope said, pressing for more input from instructors.

“Until faculty has input … the search won’t have legitimacy,” he added.

LSU has been without a president since late April when the board dismissed John Lombardi on a 12-4 vote.

Lombardi’s firing came just two days after he bluntly accused some members of the state Legislature of trying to create a “superboard” to micromanage how Louisiana’s four college systems spend their money.

LSU board members said Lombardi’s brash behavior hurt their standing with legislators and Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Michael Martin, chancellor of LSU Baton Rouge, walked away from the final year of his contract Wednesday to become the head of the Colorado State University System.

Former LSU System President and Baton Rouge Chancellor William Jenkins was coaxed out of retirement in the spring to fill both vacancies temporarily.

Board members are discussing whether to leave intact or restructure the LSU System’s $3.5 billion network of four university campuses, a law school, two medical schools, 10 hospitals and dozens of outpatient medical clinics.

A catalyst for the discussion was a 25-page analysis by AGB consultants, of Washington, D.C. The report assessed the university’s current structure, compiled from 75 interviews with various LSU stakeholders.

In the first of three scenarios put forth, the consultants said the Board could strengthen the model in which LSU’s campuses in Baton Rouge, Shreveport, Alexandria and Eunice operate as distinct institutions.

Under that model, the individual institutions would meet with the president and the system office regularly to solve problems, set annual goals and plan for the future. Additionally, a strong public relations push would help the public understand the system’s “integrity,” its “attunement” to statewide needs and its successes.

The remaining two scenarios took into account the vacant president and Baton Rouge chancellor positions.

In a scenario titled “Natural Evolution,” the Board could merge two positions, ending the “seemingly endemic struggles of system and flagship,” the consultants wrote in their “scenario analysis.”

The Natural Evolution option would allow the president to strengthen coordination among donors, human resource departments and accounting offices, the consultants said. It would also prevent LSU’s leader from ignoring any one campus or playing one against another, they said. Such a merger would likely take a decade to complete, the consultants said.

The final scenario, “Seizing the Opportunity,” was presented as an expedited version of the Natural Evolution option, combining the chancellor and president positions in two years.

The option would quickly end duplication of services, make collaboration among campuses easier and bring an end to the bickering among institutions for declining state dollars.

Since 2008, Jindal and the Legislature have balanced the state’s budget by cutting higher education funding by more than $420 million.

The three scenarios sought to reconcile some of the complaints from faculty, administrators and donors. The consultants said those gripes have lead to low morale and “considerable ill will” at LSU.

Some of the complaints were a loss of freedom to innovate because of increased bureaucracy, a culture where interaction among campuses was not encouraged and a lack campuses having a say in how state dollars were divided up.

The report, which contrasts LSU today with six years ago when AGB first studied the system, says the university has made strides in strategic planning, communicating its goals, and turning around what used to be “severe dysfunction” within the health care system.

LSU Board Chairman Danos said he saw truths in the good and bad within the report.

“We have a quality system with great, passionate people. We are highly motivated to identify and improve on our weaknesses and we’re going to spend time building on our strengths,” Danos said.

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