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The Best and the Worst of the Week


The Emeril Lagasse Foundation
is co-sponsoring a new summer camp for kids at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art with the Ogden and the Southern Food and Beverage Museum. The camp is open to children who will enter the second, third or fourth grades in Orleans Parish public schools this fall. Campers will learn about the expression of New Orleans heritage through food and cooking, and about good nutrition. For more information or to register, contact Liz Williams at (504) 539-9617 by next Monday (July 30).

The Recovery School District
is reaching out to community and faith-based groups and accepting proposals for a larger local presence in the state-run school system. The district wants organizations to recruit their members to serve in RSD schools as monitors, crossings guards and truancy specialists. This is not a volunteer program — RSD will train and pay the organizations for their services. For more information, contact Racquel Ezell at (504) 330-8254 or go to and click on "Louisiana Department of Education Bids."

The Louisiana Ethics Commission
recently accepted the "resignation" of chief administrator Gray Sexton and then "rehired" him as a "consultant" to skirt a new state law requiring Sexton to release the names of his private law clients. Last year, the Jefferson Parish Council learned it was paying one contractor to inspect the work of another, and the two were jointly owned. Sexton showed up at a council meeting to defend both contractors — as their legal counsel. And he's the guy policing conflicts of interest for Louisiana politicians?!

The U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security
recently announced that Louisiana will see a significant reduction in homeland security grant funding this year. Louisiana will receive $16.2 million — a 21 percent drop from last year's $20.8 million. New Orleans was awarded nearly $4.4 million in Urban Area Security Initiative funding, which is more than $300,000 less than it received last year. The news was even worse for Baton Rouge, which was cut from the list of urban areas eligible for funding.

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